Next Galaxy Gear will run Tizen, not Android: report

Will Samsung jettison Android for its next Galaxy Gear smart watch? 

Reuters
The original Galaxy Gear smartwatch.

Later this month, Samsung is expected to release the next iteration of its Gear smart watch

And according to a new report in USA Today, the next Gear timepiece will run an HTML5 version of the Tizen operating system, instead of the Android OS featured on the current model. USA Today, which spoke to several people "familiar with the situation," speculated that the decision could be an attempt, on Samsung's part, to "avoid giving Google too much power." 

Samsung, unsurprisingly, is not commenting. 

The original Gear was launched last September; the critical reception was muted, to say the least. As many reviewers pointed out, to really take full advantage of the watch, you needed to also own a Galaxy phone or Note tablet, a set-up that would run you hundreds of dollars. Moreover, battery life was poor, the apps were substandard, and the design was a little clunky. 

"If you’ve ever seen a cycling race, you’ll know that leading from the front isn’t always a great idea," writes Vlad Savov of The Verge. "The front runner has to cut a path through the wind and expend much more energy than the savvy followers behind him. The same is true for tech companies looking to establish new product categories — being first at something often means being first to make the big mistakes." 

So was Samsung smart to jettison Android this time around? Larry Dignan of ZDNet, for one, thinks it was. 

"Could you imagine if Samsung put Android on the back burner and put Tizen on a big product like the Galaxy line?" Mr. Dignan writes. "Samsung would risk customer angst. On Gear, Samsung the stakes are lower and the requirements for Tizen aren't nearly as hard to fulfill. HTML5 has improved to the point where many applications and mobile sites can approach native apps in performance. On a smartwatch, HTML5 will likely be good enough." 

You've read  of  free articles. Subscribe to continue.

Dear Reader,

About a year ago, I happened upon this statement about the Monitor in the Harvard Business Review – under the charming heading of “do things that don’t interest you”:

“Many things that end up” being meaningful, writes social scientist Joseph Grenny, “have come from conference workshops, articles, or online videos that began as a chore and ended with an insight. My work in Kenya, for example, was heavily influenced by a Christian Science Monitor article I had forced myself to read 10 years earlier. Sometimes, we call things ‘boring’ simply because they lie outside the box we are currently in.”

If you were to come up with a punchline to a joke about the Monitor, that would probably be it. We’re seen as being global, fair, insightful, and perhaps a bit too earnest. We’re the bran muffin of journalism.

But you know what? We change lives. And I’m going to argue that we change lives precisely because we force open that too-small box that most human beings think they live in.

The Monitor is a peculiar little publication that’s hard for the world to figure out. We’re run by a church, but we’re not only for church members and we’re not about converting people. We’re known as being fair even as the world becomes as polarized as at any time since the newspaper’s founding in 1908.

We have a mission beyond circulation, we want to bridge divides. We’re about kicking down the door of thought everywhere and saying, “You are bigger and more capable than you realize. And we can prove it.”

If you’re looking for bran muffin journalism, you can subscribe to the Monitor for $15. You’ll get the Monitor Weekly magazine, the Monitor Daily email, and unlimited access to CSMonitor.com.