SEOUL South Korean tech giant Samsung Electronics Co Ltd said on Tuesday it will start selling its third smartphone powered by the company’s own Tizen mobile operating system in India next week.
The Z2 phone, equipped with a 4-inch screen and India-specific features such as a safety mode for motorcyclists, will be the cheapest Tizen phone Samsung has launched to date at 4,590 rupees ($68.44).
The phone, the first Tizen-powered device that will run on 4G networks, will start selling in India on Aug. 29.
The world’s top maker of smartphones, televisions and memory chips is trying to reduce its dependence on Google, whose Android operating system powers Samsung’s Galaxy smartphones.
The firm has been using Tizen on products ranging from TVs, home appliances and wearable products to enable the devices to communicate with each other and phones via the internet.
Samsung has so far kept Tizen for a small number of markets such as India and Bangladesh, where many potential customers are still first-time buyers looking for a cheap device and do not necessarily need a big library of apps.
The firm declined to comment on sales figures but analysts have said the Z2’s predecessors have found some success.
($1 = 67.0625 Indian rupees)
(Reporting by Se Young Lee; Editing by Simon Cameron-Moore)