Tizen OS: Intro

Hi Guys,

In earlier posts, we discussed about the Android Operating System, today we will discuss about an other high-end mobile OS which is yet being developed, known as the Tizen OS. It is a project within the Linux Foundation and is governed by a Technical Steering Group (TSG) composed of many multinational companies like Samsung and Intel among others. The Technical Steering Group is the primary decision-making body for the open source project, with a focus on platform development and delivery, along with the formation of working groups to support the device.

What is Tizen OS?

Tizen is an operating system based on the Linux Kernel (Linux Kernel in simpler words mean the most basic level or core of a Linux-based OS, and is responsible for resource allocation, file management, and security). It targets a very wide range of devices including smartphones, tablets, in-vehicle infotainment devices, smart TVs, PCs, smart cameras, wearable computing (such as smart watches), Blu-ray players, printers and smart home appliances (such as refrigerators, lighting, washing machines, air conditioners, ovens/microwaves, robotic vacuüm cleaners etc.). Its sole purpose is to offer a consistent user experience across various devices.

Who are the Developers of Tizen?

The Tizen Association was formed to guide the industrial role of Tizen, including requirements gathering, identifying and facilitating service models, and overall industry marketing and education.To make an Ultimate OS, it would need a huge amount of capital. Current members include Telecommunications network operators, Original Equipment Manufacturers like Fujitsu, Huawei, Intel, KT Corporation, NEC Casio Mobile Communications, NTT Docomo, Orange S.A., Panasonic Mobile Communications, Samsung, SK Telecom, Sprint Corporation and Vodafone.

Why is Tizen so special?

Tizen is an open and flexible OS built for the mobile and connected device ecosystem, including device manufacturers, mobile operators, application developers and independent software vendors (ISVs). Tizen is developed by a community of developers, under Open Source governance, and is open to all members who wish to take part.
This means if you are a developer you can help in developing Tizen too, at https://developer.tizen.org/.
The Tizen operating system comes in multiple profiles to serve different industrial requirements. The current Tizen profiles are Tizen IVI (in-vehicle infotainment), Tizen Mobile, Tizen TV, and Tizen Wearable. Additionally, in Tizen 3.0, all profiles are built on top of a commonly shared infrastructure called Tizen Common.
With Tizen, a device manufacturer can begin with one of these profiles and change it to serve their own needs, or use the Tizen Common base to develop a new profile to meet the memory, processing and power requirements of any device and quickly bring it to market.
Mobile operators can work with device partners to customize the operating system and user experience to meet the needs of specific customer segments or demographics.
For application developers and ISVs, Tizen offers the power of native application development with the flexibility of unparalleled HTML5 support. Tizen also offers the potential for application developers to extend their reach to new “smart devices” running Tizen, including wearable, consumer electronics, cars, appliances etc.

Main Features of Stock UI

The main features of the Tizen OS are as following –

Scene Management Feature –

The Tizen platform provides scene management as a feature which helps to:

  • Enhance the form life-cycle management and also make the transitions between forms or panels much easier.
  • Jump to a specific scene in an application, go back to the previous scene with or without skipping some scenes, or move to the next scene according to a predefined scenario.
  • Add various transition animations for forms and panels.

GUI Controls –

You can display and interact with the UI controls (graphical user interface elements that are displayed inside the application frame). The UI controls are divided into 2 general classifications:

  • Container –

    A container is a control that can contain controls and other containers to handle layout and presentation aspects. Containers have a parent-child relationship with the controls included in them.

  • Controls –

    Controls are the real UI elements, such as lists and text fields, that can be added to containers. They provide user interaction functionality to an application. Controls cannot contain other controls.

Data Binding –

(Its kinda programming like stuff, non – geek users may skip this part.) You can place data into UI control properties at run time, and define the directions of the data flow and the triggers for the data transfer to start updating application data.

  • You can define the size and place of the child controls within a container, and make sure that the layout of the child controls remains the same regardless of the screen orientation.
  • You can use animation functionality handling to make the user interface rich. Animations can be implemented on both UI controls and visual element objects.
  • Effects are based on an effect model, which has multiple model surfaces based on logical coördinates. You can define interactive and time-based 3D transition effects for your application.
  • You can display input characters and symbols in applications. Additionally, you can use the input method editor to define a way to input a language in the associated text input UI control.

Accessibility –

Accessibility allows physically disabled users to use all the device functionalities normally. Tizen provides a large number of such features to such people. The most basic features are large fonts and the screen reader functionality to make applications accessible for visually impaired persons.
Touch effect allows you to play predefined effects. If you make your own custom control, this functionality can help you to create feedback when, for example, buttons are pressed.

List of Compatible Mobile Devices

This is the list of official devices which have been launched with the Tizen OS –

  • Samsung NX200 Smart Camera
  • Samsung NX300 Smart Camera
  • Samsung NX300M Smart Camera
  • Samsung NX1 Smart Camera
  • Samsung Gear 2
  • Samsung Gear 2 Neo
  • Samsung Gear S
  • Samsung Z SM-Z910F
  • Samsung Z1

Porting the OS by developers may result in a lot longer list of compatible devices.
Any query, suggestions or feedback will be appreciated.

Tizen 2.3 Screenshot Gallery


That’s all folks.

Image Source – whatmobile.net (featured image) and gsmarena.com (screenshots).
List source – wikipedia.com
Author – Abdul Rehman
Co – Author – Swapnil Jha