The new Samsung Galaxy Gear will run Tizen OS, not Android

It might seem strange that Samsung would choose to release a Galaxy Gear follow-up only five months after the original first went on sale, but the next smartwatch will be different from the first thanks to a new operating system. USA Today reports that it has spoken with three different sources who say that Samsung will debut a new Galaxy Gear running Tizen OS at Mobile World Congress.

The second iteration of the Galaxy Gear will reportedly debut next week. It will run Tizen, the Meego inspired operating system developed in partnership with Intel, though the software on the watch will be “an HTML5 version of Tizen,” according to USA Today’s sources. The hope is that more web developers will be attracted to the platform. The Android-based Galaxy Gear supports several apps, but are mostly designed by Samsung and lack the widespread developer support needed to build robust connectivity options. Considering Tizen has such a small hope of competing with Android and iOS, developer support will be even smaller, so allowing HTML5 developers to code in their preferred method rather than requiring native Tizen apps is a compromise.

Why use Tizen at all? According to USA Today, Samsung fears Google might choose to dominate the wearable market in a way that shuts out companies other than Google. Samsung wants to be able to make money off software and services rather than a one-time transaction when someone purchases a device. It will be difficult to do that if Google exerts heavy control over Android guidelines and access to its popular apps, so Samsung is trying to hedge its bets with Tizen. It’s a big gamble, but Samsung reportedly believes that course of action has a bigger long-term payoff.

source: USA Today


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