Despite early reports of a frosty reception, Samsung has remained confident that its Tizen powered Z1 smartphone is selling well in India and recently launched the handset in Bangladesh. Now, industry sources are suggesting that Samsung has sold more than 100,000 Z1’s in India since its launch on January 14th and has already shifted 20,000 handset in Bangladesh in the last two weeks.
Considering that over seven million smartphones are sold in India each month, the Tizen platform may not have made much of an impact on the market yet. However, over 100,000 units for a minor operating system and new venture into the country is decent start.
Tizen and the Z1 are Samsung’s response to the growth of low-cost brands in India and other Asian markets. Priced at only Rs. 5700 ($90) unlocked and boasting a more lightweight operating system than other Android competitors, Samsung is undertaking an aggressive marketing campaign in India and Bangladesh, targeting the local competition.
Samsung is expected to release Tizen phones in additional Asian markets later this year, including Indonesia, Sri Landa, and Nepal. Although the Z1 is unlikely to see release in North America or Europe, Samsung has recently installed remote test lab servers for Tizen application developers in Korea, Britain, Poland and the United States, with sources suggesting that other Tizen products could be scheduled for these markets in the not too distant future.
It looks like Tizen smartphones are here to stay, but we will have to wait a little longer to see how much of a real impact Samsung’s low-cost handsets have in these highly competitive regional markets.