[THE INVESTOR] Samsung Electronics, the world’s largest smartphone maker, will continue to maintain its two-pronged strategy for the low-end smartphones with its Galaxy J and Tizen lineup this year.
The tech giant, which leads a global alliance of tech firms, including Intel and Huawei, to develop the Tizen operating system, is forecast to release a new smartphone equipped with the updated Tizen OS, called Tizen 3.0, in the first half this year, according to sources on Jan. 25.
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Tizen, first launched in 2012 to rival Google’s Android and Apple’s iOS, can be used to run smartphones as well as wearables, tablet PCs and home appliances.
Samsung has been leveraging the Tizen OS as a means to wean itself off its dependence on the Android system.
The Korean tech giant has so far released three Tizen-powered smartphones -- Tizen Z1, Z2 and Z3 – mostly sold in emerging markets such as India, Bangladesh, and Nigeria.
In 2015 alone, Samsung sold 2.9 million units of Tizen smartphones in the regions. No data for the 2016 sales is available at the moment.
The soon-to-be-released Tizen phone, SM-Z250F, is expected to feature a voice command solution. The details of the hardware specifications are not available yet.
Samsung would also try to attract consumers, especially those who favor affordable devices, with low-end Galaxy J smartphone models.
This year, the tech giant will bring advanced features that can often be found in high-end smartphones to the J series.
“Samsung will try to gain a competitive edge in the mid-range and low-end smartphone segment by incorporating diverse, practical features, such as fingerprint scanners, a dust- and water-resistance design, and mobile payment solutions, in the smartphones,” said a Samsung executive in a conference call on Jan. 24.
Samsung aims to sell more than 100 million Galaxy J smartphones this year while its sales target for the higher-range Galaxy S and A models is 60 million and 20 million, respectively.
By Kim Young-won (firstname.lastname@example.org)