New Delhi: Samsung launched a long-awaited smartphone, the Z1, in India that runs its homegrown Tizen operating system. The handset maker has termed Tizen as a good alternative to Google Inc. 's dominant Android platform. Samsung Z1 is priced at Rs 5,700.
Samsung Z2 features a 4-inch screen with a resolution of 800 X 480 pixels. The device is powered by a 1.2GHz processor along with 768MB of RAM. It has 4GB internal storage, which offers support for up to 64GB microSD card.
The handset comes with a 3.1-megapixel rear camera and is fueled by a 1,500mAh battery. The Z1 will be available to consumers from today in white, black, and red. The company also said that Z1 users will have access to more than 270,000 songs that can be streamed or downloaded, as well as over 80 live TV channels through the digital entertainment store Club Samsung. A free entertainment package called "Joy Box" will give Z1 users access to music, movies, and TV programs.
"The smartphone market in India is rapidly evolving, with many consumers using their device as their screen of choice for content including videos, television programs, and video games, as well as a range of apps," said Hyun Chil Hong, Samsung India Electronics president and CEO.
Though Tizen is different from Android, Samsung is using almost the same Touchwiz interface on the Z1 that it uses on its Android phones.
Samsung and Intel spearheaded Tizen's development, and Japan's NTT Docomo committed to using the OS on high-end smartphones. Samsung had initially planned to launch the first Tizen smartphone in 2013, but it never arrived after the company failed to get support from carriers. Originally planned as a higher-end alternative to Android, the Tizen platform was reoriented after the withdrawal of key partners. After several rounds of discussions, Samsung decided to use it for budget-friendly smartphones and the Z1 is one such device.
Industry watchers believe Tizen's success is far from guaranteed. Keen to focus on first-time users in India and loading Tizen onto other electronic devices like televisions and smartwatches, Samsung hopes to gain a foothold in parts of the market where its Silicon Valley rivals aren't entrenched players.