Despite a promise earlier this year to launch “new, competitive Tizen devices” in 2013, all the signs (let alone the calendar) now point that such a launch will not happen until 2014.
According to Japan’s RBMen, Samsung officials apparently told unnamed Korean media that the launch of the first Tizen smartphone had been pushed out to the first half of 2014. This follows earlier delays that saw the launch window slip from early 2013 to late 2013. Even then, it appears that Samsung executives, including CEO JK Shin, were not satisfied with the progress made and decided to further delay the launch.
Further confirmation of further launch delays then came from Kim Hyun-seok, head of Samsung Electronics’ visual display unit. Speaking at the Smart TV Global Summit 2013, Kim would only commit to say that the Tizen smartphone would come out before a Tizen-powered TV would. “We’ve seen much progress in the Tizen TV, but the phone will come first,” Kim said.
Kim went on to describe Tizen as a “significant investment.” This would suggest that despite all the delays, Samsung still sees a future for the open-source operating system that rose out of MeeGo’s ashes. Perhaps Samsung will invest some of its promised additional R&D efforts into finally getting that Tizen smartphone out next year.
On a more positive note, work continues on the Tizen operating system itself. Samsung appears set to unveil Tizen 3.0 at a developer conference in South Korea on November 11. A new flat design with influences from Windows Phone and Samsung’s own TouchWiz is expected.