Архив метки: Information Week

Samsung Not Sold On The Bada-Tizen Merger Just Yet


I’ve long wondered what exactly Samsung would do with their homegrown Bada operating system, and for a little while there the answer seemed clear — Samsung SVP Tae-jin Kang recently noted that Bada would be merged with the Intel-backed Tizen OS project.

In fact, he said at CES that the work to combine both platforms had already begun, which seemed like a pretty definitive conclusion for Bada.

Now it seems like Samsung may be having second thoughts about the whole process. Samsung representatives have reached out to AllThingsD and Information Week to say that a final decision regarding a merger hasn’t yet been made.

“Samsung and other members of Tizen Association have not made a firm decision regarding the merge of Bada and Tizen,” Samsung said in a statement. “We are carefully looking at it as an option to make the platforms serve better for customers.”

It goes on to say that Bada still has an important part to play in Samsung’s mobile ecosystem and that it would continue “democratizing the smartphone experience in all markets.” Samsung seems to have chosen their words very wisely here, and seems to confirm rumors that Bada would continue to power low-end smartphones while Tizen would grace some more premium fare.

Samsung has spent some time on the fence when it comes to their Bada-based efforts. The company was reportedly considering making it open-source back in September, with the possibility of expanding its use into their line of Smart TVs. The nascent Tizen platform is similarly meant for expansion into different device categories, with “tablets, netbooks, in-vehicle infotainment devices, [and] smart TVs” being prime among them. Sounds like a perfect fit, should the two parties ever make things official.

Of course, there are considerable gains to be made in the mobile market too. Despite playing second-fiddle to Samsung’s mobile OS of choice, Bada isn’t exactly a slouch — for a time Bada appeared on more smartphones sold than Windows Phone. While it poses little chance of making a considerable dent in a smartphone market that’s already dominated by a handful of players, Bada was being looked at as a way for Samsung to reduce their reliance on Google’s own mobile OS.

There are a number of reasons why Samsung would want to keep an ace in the hole, not least of which is the fact that Samsung pays out royalties to Microsoft for the Android devices they produce. And of course Samsung making Windows Phones too, so royalties are paid out for nearly every handset Samsung makes save for those running Bada. With a Bada-Tizen union, Samsung and other hardware vendors may have a more viable competitor in the smartphone OS space, but for now we’ll have to see if the merger ever comes to fruition.

Samsung Not Sold On The Bada-Tizen Merger Just Yet

RIM Denies BlackBerry 10 Delay Allegations: Claims Are “Uninformed”


I’ll admit to lobbing a few mortars at RIM (alright, maybe more than a few), but it looks like things may be even worse than expected. BGR reported earlier today that RIM co-CEO Mike Lazaridis lied about the the reason their first BlackBerry 10 devices would be delayed even later into 2012.

Lazaridis said during RIM’s recent earnings call that they were waiting for a specific dual-core LTE chipset to be available before their new BlackBerrys would see the light of day in late 2012. It was a strange announcement, considering that RIM has never really fared well in the specs arms race, although they I don’t blame them for trying. What I do blame them for is dragging their feet when it comes to innovation, but that’s a story for another time.

The chipset situation may have been a ruse, if BGR’s high-level source is to be believed. According to him, the real situation behind the delay is even more dire — the devices in question may not even exist yet.

”RIM is simply pushing this out as long as they can for one reason,” the source said. “They don’t have a working product yet.”

It’s a serious accusation to level at RIM, and if it’s true, then they may have already sealed their own fate.

Or did they? RIM has just now weighed in on these claims, and their response is pretty much exactly what you’d expect. When it comes to the notion that the company’s first new BlackBerrys are essentially vaporware, RIM flatly denied the rumor:

“As explained on our earnings call, the broad engineering impact of this [chipset] decision and certain other factors significantly influenced the anticipated timing for the BlackBerry 10 devices. The anonymous claim suggesting otherwise is inaccurate and uninformed.”

There we have it, straight from the horse’s mouth: it’s a parts problem. The release goes to say that the chipset in question is “required to deliver a world class user experience” and that “any suggestion to the contrary is simply false.”

Of course, even if the claims were true, RIM wouldn’t broadcast the news of their failure to every media outlet with a pulse. They’d do — well, they’d do exactly what they’re doing now. They would deny everything, and (hopefully) get in gear behind closed doors to make sure none of this gloom-and-doom forecasting ends up being right.

Ultimately, I doubt that either side is offering the entire truth. Information Week points out that the leak could be the work of a disgruntled RIM employee, and RIM’s PR team would do their best to manage a situation like this before it led to another crisis for an already-beleaguered company. Things inside RIM may be even worse than we know, but if they can succeed in delivering a user experience that’s worth waiting for, all of this he-said-they-said business will have been for nothing.

Let’s just hope the longer wait pays off.

RIM Denies BlackBerry 10 Delay Allegations: Claims Are “Uninformed”