Saturday, February 16, 2013

Samsung's Chances with Tizen and Without Android - Not Good

This Computerworld post analyzes and speculates about how Samsung can go about incorporating its new and untested mobile OS, Tizen, into its lineup that comprises of mostly Android devices with a sprinkling of Windows phones. In a couple of words: not good.
The post started off talking about the general direction of the smartphone market and where it has headed and who has been making all the money. And the truth is that while Apple has done well with the iPhone from a profit standpoint, Google makes money through its ads and apps while Samsung makes money off the hardware. And Samsung by most accounts is doing very well in that department.
The fact that Samsung could be pushing Tizen shows just how the relationship between Google and its Android partners have changed and how the Android economy is shaping up. Samsung, as is said in the post, has a loyal following because it is perceived to make the best Android device. But that loyalty extends only to Andoid on the Galaxy devices only.
Samsung maybe have some Apple envy as the post indicates but that is oversimplifying things. Google bought Motorola not only for its patents but also its proven engineering/design teams. The new Google/Motorola has made Samsung weary and it should. Motorola will be releasing a flagship device to challenge not only Apple but the Galaxy S 3 and 4.
If Google succeeds in displacing Samsung as the top Android device maker, it leaves Samsung nowhere else to go. Windows? That's Nokia territory.
So, that leaves it with Tizen. And even talking about a defense move by Samsung is also oversimplifying it. We are talking about a whole ecosystem here. Not just about hardware, software, and media.
In time, we will realize that the mobile market is just the beginning. This is why Samsung may well advocate an aggressive campaign to get users to trust that it knows what it's doing in moving over to Tizen. Luckily for Samsung, it will have Intel as a partner in all this.
We'll have to see what role the giant chip maker will play in all this for the short run. Intel is also looking down the road when it will not only be about the mobile market but into others where its chips could play a vital role. For Intel, the writing is on the wall for the PC market.
Still, the Computerworld is a very good read and I highly recommend it. Samsung is slated to give a Tizen demo at the Mobile World Congress at the end of February.
Until we see more from Samsung, we have to conclude for now that Samsung will have a difficult time at it. But since we like competition, one can only hope that they have some kind of success.

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