AH Primetime: Samsung Isn’t Done With Tizen; In Fact, They’re Just Beginning

August 7, 2013 - Written By Leonardo Benveniste

Samsung is the king of Android, there’s no doubt about that, from the low-end to the high-end, almost every smartphone sold running Android is made by Samsung. This has been great for the expansion of our beloved platform but many people think that this has caused the Android ecosystem dependent on the Korean manufacturer. For some time now, there have been speculation that Samsung might try to break free from Google’s OS and go with it’s own operating system in the shape of Tizen, an OS co-developed by Samsung and Intel.

In a joint interview with CNet Korea and CNet, J.K. Shin, Samsung’s co-CEO said that the company has broad ambitions for Tizen and that the OS is more than just a project or a “simple alternative for Android”. Shin said:

“There are many convergences not only among IT gadgets, including smartphones, tablets, PCs, and cameras, but also among different industries like cars, bio, or banks,” “Cross-convergence is the one [area] Samsung can do best since we do have various parts and finished products.”

It seems that Samsung has plans for Tizen that go beyond the barriers of mobile devices like smartphones and tablets and into cameras, PCs, cars or even bank territory. We’ve seen Android crawl up into fridges or ovens so it plausible that Samsung will try to get its share of these upcoming market, home appliances haven’t gone smart yet expect for the TV and I expect a foray into these territory soon from many companies.

Samsung's Tizen reference device
Samsung’s Tizen reference device

W know that Samsung has been praising its relationship with Google (and vice-versa) and avoiding the surge of any kind of rumor, but Samsung has been creating many apps that could allow Samsung to break free like its own hub for apps, music and movies, health companions and exclusive features on its phones.

Although Samsung delayed the introduction of the Tizen phone until the fourth quarter of the year, Shin was quick to put aside any rumors that Samsung would be getting ready to drop Tizen and said that the company was maintaining development on all three platforms, referring to Android and Windows Phone.

One area mentioned specifically by Shin was cars and said that Samsung would like to be a part of and a person familiar with the work Intel has done on Tizen has said that the OS is what the auto industry needs to differentiate themselves, although it wouldn’t make its way to cars until 2015.

Shin said that Samsung’s strategy revolves around the term “cross category” meaning that Samsung will work hard to integrate all of its devices, like it has done with their smartphones and TVs.

Finally, Shin talked about the company’s future in tablets with only a tease: “There will be good news on the tablet soon, please wait and see.” So far, Samsung has released as many tablets as possible in every size available, and while we as Android fans don’t really appreciate this since most of them aren’t any good, it has helped Samsung chop away Apple’s market share and be the go-to brand for most consumers.

We’ll have to wait and see what happens with Samsung, Tizen and Android in the future, but for now, Samsung is deep into the platform and has a lot of road to cover before breaking free, most notably in the app ecosystem, they would have to get way too many developers on board to be able craft a successful launch. Personally, I think that Android will probably be better without Samsung. HTC, Sony and Motorola have fantastic devices in the market that aren’t selling because of Samsung’s marketing power, but even then, people are buying into the ecosystem, with Samsung moving away people would search for a new Android device which would allow these companies to start making the money that they’re missing right now. I’m not saying Samsung is bad for Android, not at all, what I’m saying is that Samsung is taking the space other companies could easily fill. The HTC One, the Moto X and the Xperia Z are perfect examples of this.