Korean technology giant Samsung Electronics stated on Monday they will begin selling a smartphone running on their homegrown operating system Tizen beginning the third quarter this year. This would mark the first step in Samsung’s plan to separate themselves from Google’s Android OS. This could have significant effects on the mobile market.
Samsung has already stated the device will be called the Samsung Z and will begin selling in Russia from the third quarter of this year. They also plan to release this phone in other markets as well. To generate a strong apps line-up, the company will also launch a Tizen store that will function similarly to the App Store and the Google Play Store.
Samsung wishes to strengthen themselves in the software and services market, which is clear in their push towards Tizen. Currently, Google is much stronger in this market with every Samsung smartphone so far operating on Android. However, it is undeniable that in the smartphone market, Samsung dominates the competition. Whether or not the Samsung devices will be strong enough to stand on their own without Android is the real question.
It was only earlier this year that Samsung was planning to introduce a Tizen smartphone in both France and Japan. Unfortunately for them, those plans were scraped after the carrier partners bailed out. The carriers blamed weak demand. With this announcement, Samsung has not announced any official carriers.
Sources close to the project state the Tizen device will sell at a lower price point than the high end smartphones such as the HTC One M8 and the iPhone 5S. This seems logical for a device on a yet to be proven platform.
Samsung also officially released images with their announcement of this new Tizen smartphone. The images showed off the home screen of the OS. At first glance, it appears to be virtually the same as the Touchwiz skin atop current Samsung devices with a few small aesthetic changes. The device still features the patented Samsung functional buttons such as back and options.
This venture will definitely shake up the smartphone market. While Android is the most popular OS on smartphones, Samsung is a monopoly within the Android OS. Basically half of all Android devices are Samsung manufactured. With such a monopoly behind them, this decision could very well pay off for Samsung and Tizen has the potential to develop into a strong competitor against iOS and Android.