Samsung had historically used the Galaxy trademark for launching Android smartphones, tablets, and even cameras, but it looks like the South Korean electronics-maker will be broadening the Galaxy moniker to include smartphones running the Tizen OS, which is being developed jointly with Intel and other partners. It’s unclear what the branding will mean for Samsung’s existing relationship with Google and Android as Samsung has launched different product lines with different branding in the past. For example, Windows Phone 8 is branded under the Ativ moniker and the company’s proprietary Bada OS was launched on hardware with the Wave branding. Combining the Linux-based Tizen and Android products under the same recognizable branding will definitely give Tizen more prominence, which is especially important considering that Tizen is still a new venture.
According to a Digitimes report, Samsung is currently developing a Tizen Galaxy phone with a model number of i9300.
Tizen was born out of the ashes of the MeeGo platform. MeeGo itself was jointly worked on by Intel and Nokia, but after Nokia’s then new CEO Stephen Elop announced that the Finnish smartphone-maker would be focusing on Microsoft’s Windows Phone platform in a bid to compete against iOS and Android, Intel quickly folded MeeGo and quickly turned to Samsung to create Tizen. For its part, MeeGo was developed by merging Intel’s Moblin OS together with Nokia’s Maemo OS.
As Tizen doesn’t quite have the brand recognition in the marketplace, perhaps Samsung’s branding of the smartphone under the Galaxy mark is to help grow Tizen worldwide and quickly acquaint both consumers and developers to the mobile operating system, which is designed to be scalable and as a competitor to Android. While Samsung has been a strong advocate of Android in the past, recent troubles related to intellectual property, patents, and ensuing worldwide legal battles with Apple may have spurred Samsung to quickly expand its product portfolio to offer alternatives to Android.
Previously it was reported that Samsung may have delayed launching its first Tizen handset until 2013. Tizen was originally slated to debut from Samsung later this year. In the U.S., carrier Sprint Nextel has expressed support for Tizen, but did not give specifics regarding the roadmap for Tizen phones in its portfolio.