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Report: Samsung preparing to launch Tizen devices in Europe
Tizen has yet to become a household name, but Samsung is quite intent to change that. Some in the West may know of the Android-alternative’s existence as it’s running on all but one of the company’s Gear smartwatch line of devices. Consumers in India or Bangladesh would be more familiar given that Samsung has released the Z1 smartphone there which, despite initial reports of slow sales, has apparently performed well. Indeed the original Z (SM-Z910F) was announced and primed for release in Russia just over a year ago, offering much higher specs than the Z1, though it would never come to pass. Now it seems, Samsung is keen on bringing Tizen back to Europe, or -perhaps- introducing it for the first time, depending on how one looks at things.
In an exclusive story, SamMobile is reporting that Korea’s largest OEM is currently testing Tizen in all major countries throughout Europe. While sources didn’t go into details about what this entailed, the site has speculated that it could mean the upcoming Tizen 3.0 software build might be the catalyst for getting things started. It is expected that Europe will see the release of one Tizen device in the next year, with speculation leaning towards either the already released Z1 or the leaked Z3 (SM-Z300H) which is said to include a 5-inch 720p SAMOLED display, 1.3GHz Quad-Core Spreadtrum SoC, 1.5GB of RAM, 8GB of on-board storage, and an 8-megapixel rear/5-megapixel front camera configuration. Said device would also have support for microSD and a 2,600mAh battery.
What and Why
Samsung is facing continued difficulties with respect to earnings from smartphone sales, a situation that was made all the more apparent earlier this week in a story published by The Wall Street Journal. The problem is largely in key battleground countries like India or China, where highly aggressive competition has seen Samsung’s once golden position erode. Pricing is a major factor here, with products made by Xiaomi or Huawei or even OnePlus offering hardware that is on-par with Samsung’s own devices (at times with superior build quality) at significantly lower price to consumers.
If Tizen takes off, then Samsung has a new way to earn income from not only devices, but from bundled services as well. While the Galaxy Apps Store is present on all Galaxy devices, consumers are far more likely to use the Play Store for their needs, which ultimately generates income for Google. With Tizen however, Samsung is in control of the game and stands to cash-in from any sales that occur from transactions therein. Likewise, the promulgation and adoption of Tizen would allow Samsung to get away from the Google-controlled Android OS and establish itself as a legitimate competitor.
Those interested in the OEM’s trials and tribulations are encouraged to check out the feature we published last month which looked at Samsung’s current situation and offered possibilities of what kind of future it might want to create.
How well do you think Tizen might perform in Europe? Could it possibly fill a niche need or do you think it might catch on in a larger fashion? What would make you purchase such a smartphone? Please leave a comment below and share your thoughts.