For some time now, Samsung has been trying to get their Tizen OS off the ground and while they might not be looking to launch the platform at full-scale just yet, releasing a smartphone to at least a handful of consumers would be nice. It seems that Tizen is struggling to catch a break and the Wall Street Journal thinks that might be because carriers have all but given up on the platform. At least, that seems to be the pattern of things so far, anyway. The story goes that Tizen is Samsung’s “insurance policy” of sorts against a Google-controlled Android. However, whether or not Samsung likes it, they’re very much still dependent on Android. Without Tizen devices in the wild, there are few chances for developers to see their apps and games return a profit and as such, Android still remains Samsung’s platform of choice.
Samsung had partnered with a number of carriers in order to get Tizen onto smartphones and out there in the market. However, one-by-one, these partners have fallen like dominoes. In Europe, Spain’s Telefonica was supposed to be pushing a Tizen device, but instead has decided to focus on Firefox OS. Over in France, Orange said that Tizen wasn’t “as mature” as competing platforms and decided against launching a Tizen device. In the Far East, Japan’s NTT DoCoMo was all set to make a big announcement surrounding a Tizen phone, but canceled at the last-minute saying that their wasn’t a demand for an iOS or Android competitor in Japan. It’s less surprising to see such a thing happen in Japan however, as Samsung isn’t anywhere near as successful there as they are elsewhere. Closer to home though, things are the same as Sprint bowed out of the Tizen association to focus on “more immediate product launches”.
All of this is hardly surprising, as launching a new platform is difficult – no matter who you are. Take Palm and WebOS for instance, the company struggled to get the Pre onto store shelves and even under HP’s guidance, the Touchpad failed miserably. Still, the recent bonding between Samsung and Google could herald even better things for Samsung and consumers in general. Here’s hoping that Samsung can continue to create brilliant Android devices, regardless of what they choose to do with Tizen.