Samsung to start selling Tizen-based smartphones

Samsung will start selling smartphones this year featuring the Tizen operating system backed by Intel.

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Samsung will start selling smartphones this year featuring the Tizen operating system backed by Intel.

"We plan to release new, competitive Tizen devices within this year and will keep expanding the lineup depending on market conditions," Samsung said. The company did not elaborate on model specifications, prices or timeframe for their debut.

The new handsets will come as Samsung looks to reduce its reliance on Google's Android operating system after the internet search company acquired handset maker Motorola Mobility Holdings US$12.5 billion in May. Executives from Intel, Samsung, NTT DoCoMo and Vodafone Group formed the Tizen Association last year to support the open-source software.

"The Tizen was born as Samsung hoped to lighten its growing dependence on Google on concerns that its top position in the smartphone market may weaken following the Google- Motorola tie-up," Byun Han Joon, an analyst at KB Investment & Securities in Seoul, said. "Intel always wanted to boost its presence in the mobile CPU market."

Google, operator of the world's most-popular search engine, plans to devote more attention to mobile devices as its rivalry with Apple accelerates. Samsung is the biggest seller of devices running Android in the $219bn global smartphone market.

Samsung reported record profit in the three months ended September 30 amid surging sales of its Galaxy smartphone. More than two-thirds of the earnings were generated by the telecommunications business, according to the company.

Samsung shipped 56.9 million smartphones in the third quarter, giving it a record 35 per cent market share, compared with 17 per cent for Apple, researcher Strategy Analytics said in October. In total handset sales, including basic types, Samsung remained the top seller, researcher IDC said separately.

The LiMo Foundation and Linux Foundation said in September 2011 they would jointly develop Tizen for use in devices including mobile phones and TVs.

In 2009, Samsung released its Bada platform, which is mainly used in lower-end smartphones sold in Europe and emerging markets.

* Bloomberg News