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Samsung to shun Android and release Tizen phones this year

Samsung Tizen

Company wants to further dent Apple and Google marketshare by releasing phones running its own operating system

Samsung will release two new smartphones running its own Tizen operating system as the company attempts to sever ties with Google’s Android.

A high-end Tizen phone will launch by the end of June, with a second mid-range phone following soon after. The much-delayed launch of phones running its own operating system is further evidence of Samsung attempting to distance itself from Google.

But Tizen will soon need to account for 15 per cent of Samsung’s total smartphone shipments if it is to be successful, the company said.

In an interview with Reuters Yoon Han-kil, senior vice president of Samsung’s product strategy team, admitted Tizen’s past failures but was still bullish about its prospects:

“We had tried to launch (Tizen) with DoCoMo and Orange … but couldn’t because of poor market conditions. We have changed our strategy and will release the phones in a few countries where we can do well,” he said.

Samsung is keen to bolster its revenues by building a new ecosystem around Tizen. If successful, the company would hope to break the app-store dominance of Google and Apple by offering its own software platform.

Yoon said that Android “still needs to be our main business”, but added that Tizen and Windows still had a role to play.

Samsung’s first Tizen phone will launch towards the end of the second quarter of 2014. The high-end launch device will be followed by a mid-range handset.

The company has already launched the Gear 2 running on Tizen, having previously used Android on its original smartwatch. Yoon said that despite this Samsung was still working on an Android-based smartwatch that will launch later this year.

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