Samsung confirms the release of smartphones running Tizen OS (instead of Android) in the 3rd quarter of 2013 starting in France and in early 2014 in the rest of the world.
In the Mobile World Congress at Barcelona, Samsung has displayed a developer handset running Tizen 2.0 and also announced the partnership with the French operator – Orange – in releasing Tizen 2.0 samsung smartphones.
Samsung is one of the biggest firms backing the open source Tizen platform.
Why is Samsung moving away from Android ?
To understand the reasoning behind the move there are two evident reasons.
1. Samsung owns almost half of Android sales
Android phones account for almost 70% of the total Smartphone sales in 2012 showing its market dominance. Among the Android smart phone sales, Samsung accounts for about 42% of this while the other Android sellers account for only single digit percentage shares in the 4th quarter of 2012.
Thus the dominance of Android can also be attributed to Samsung’s huge sales figures.
2. Google’s acquisition of Motorola
Google has completed the acquisition of Motorola handset business in 2012 and there are now rumors of a smartphone named X phone by Google and Motorola.
When such phones come into the market, they are sure of grabbing away a huge % of market share among Android phones as Google is also directly involved – which implies faster software updates backed by better build quality from Motorola.
This is something which manufacturers like Samsung definitely do not welcome as continuing further with Android would eat away Samsung’s market share.
So, from the above two big reasons it is evident that Samsung moving towards a newer OS is definitely worth the risk. Moreover when such an OS becomes popular, Samsung can as well monetize from the app stores on Tizen by means of commission for every purchase on its app store.
Samsung not ditching Android completely
With the introduction of Tizen on Samsung devices, it does not mean that Samsung is going to ditch Android completely.
Samsung is likely to introduce Tizen based phones as a pilot project on a few carriers in 2013 and modify or improve the platform based on the reviews and then probably migrate a majority of its phones to Tizen by mid 2014.
[Tizen images from Engadget]