Lacking its own OS, Samsung flounders in Apple’s formidable wake

“You might be surprised to learn that Google is a significant problem for Samsung given that Samsung uses the Android operating system in its smart phones,” Michael Yoshikami writes for CNBC. “But here’s the problem for Samsung: Google regularly undercuts Samsung’s offerings by selling unlocked devices (without so-called bloatware) often directly to consumers. They just did it again and released the Nexus X.”

“This is exactly why Samsung is attempting to develop their own operating system called Tizen that will supposedly be released as a competitive operating system to Android and iOS,” Yoshikami writes. “Unfortunately for Samsung, Tizen continues to be delayed and all indications are that the operating system is not ready for prime time. This is understandable given the challenges that companies face in launching new operating systems. It is not easy creating a new ecosystem.”

“So, as Samsung struggles to develop their own operating system, they flood the market with new products. Half a dozen watches, two versions of the Samsung Note, two versions of the Galaxy S5, Samsung Alpha, Samsung Galaxy Mini, etc. etc. Throwing hardware to capture market share is a costly strategy but Samsung is forced to do their best to innovate on hardware because they have no operating system differentiation,” Yoshikami writes. “It’s a difficult position to be in when you are chasing a strong competitor in Apple and forced to utilize the same core operating system as a competitor who consistently undercuts you on hardware price (Google).”

Read more in the full article here.

MacDailyNews Take: Gee, that’s too bad. 🙂

In the face of new iPhones with properly-sized displays (finally!), Apple Pay, HealthKit, HomeKit, and Apple Watch, “Beleaguered Samsung” will be here before you know it!

[Thanks to MacDailyNews Readers “Fred Mertz” and “Wirehead” for the heads up.]


  1. People sometimes forget that iOS really dates back to 1985 when NeXT was founded. Granted, lots of changes have happened but that is 30 years of development that has gone into it creating the best mobile OS ever. How is Samsung going to compete with that in a matter of years? They can’t and that is why they will fail.

    1. That’s unbelievable (I believe you though).

      I like iOS, but to me iOS still feels like it’s in it’s infancy. The biggest challenge, comes from the touch interface (you never know what something is going to do, until you touch it) and the lack of a hierarchical file system.

      The challenge is to provide options while maintaining simplicity.

      1. That graph is amazing! Had no idea UNIX had so many offshoots; fascinating seeing how BSD and Mach were combined to form NeXTSTEP (if I’m reading it right) and how that gave rise to OS X. Thanks for sharing.

    2. Well both Android and Tizen date back to 1991 when the first version of Linux was released. Really, all Android and Tizen are, are just mobile Linux distros. It may not be 30 years, but that’s still quite a few years.

      When Android was first released (Android Cupcake), it was mostly just a feature phone OS. Fast forward a couple years later to when we had Android Gingerbread. It was a full fledged smartphone OS. Slow, and buggy, but still much more full featured than Cupcake. Few more years later we get Ice Cream Sandwich. That’s when Android made the jump to being a way more stable, more featured and smoother OS than it once was. Now a couple years later we have KitKat which includes even more features, and in a few months we’ll have Android L.

      What I’m saying is that Android is completely unrecognizable compared to where it started less than a decade ago. Even Apple took a few years before their product and operating system really took off. Give Tizen a few years at least. It may not be much right now but I wouldn’t be surprised if it turns out to be the next big game changer.

  2. And their stuff is butt-ugly. Counterfeit iPhone on the front, and the back looks like the sort of plastic siding you’d see on a mobile home. Perhaps Tizen will have a shag carpet theme, to properly complement their hardware.

  3. A self contained solution to mobile communications and information is better than some collection of unsupported, random parts? Amazing!

    In other news, Android devices seem to be popular with parents who always buy the wrong thing for their kids.

  4. Nice take MDN, but for a behemoth like Samscum, who are also ripping off IP in many other industries, a dent in the phone market will not be enough to make them “beleaguered”.

  5. I guess they didn’t think this one through too well when they agreed to sign the contract with Eric T Schmidt.

    It now boils down to two thieving idiots trying to outwit each other.

  6. And how is Google able to undercut the mighty hardware manufacturer, Samsung, on price? Easy. They’re giving the hardware away – and making money on YOU. That’s why Tim Cook said, “You’re the product”. That should be a chant…a tagline…everywhere – Android / Google Search /GMail / etc. = “You’re the product”.

    1. But GMail is useful! I use a GMail account for my “throw-away” email honey-pot when needed on some websites, etc. All it ever collects is spam: I’m designing an infinite loop for Google to chase its tail…

  7. This is the beauty of owning Apple products. The “ecosystem”. Some hate it, most users love it.

    What Apple has done is a dangerous game, but they’ve succeeded and the payoff is huge for both Apple and the consumer. Apple has remained focused and hasn’t spread itself too thin (that’s the risk). Desktop owners may have argued this fact waiting for the new Mac Pro from 2010 to late 2013, while iOS and iPhones and iPads took the limelight, but the payoff with the new Mac Pro was worth the wait.

    Everybody screams Apple should do “this and that”. Tim Cook recently said the most difficult thing for Apple to decide is “what not to do” and to remain focused.

    While other companies struggle to make their hardware work with other’s software. Apple keeps pushing ahead. Fine tuning, defining (which some people hate, but they can have Samsung) and refining the user experience.

    When there is an issue, others tend to sweep it under the carpet, or point the finger at someone else. If you call for assistance, you typically have to talk to a 3rd party company and you never get a solution. Apple takes accountabilty and ownership of customer issues.

    I don’t blame Samsung from wanting to develop and release their own operating system. Apple has proven the model works.

    I personally hope Samsung comes out with a great OS, a great user experience and great features. Nothing wrong with a bit of healthy competition. I like choice, but I’ll still choose Apple. What I would like to see more of from Samsung is innovation, paying attention to detail and not skimping to make a certain price point. Make the best you can. Let the consumer vote with their wallet.

    1. Only idiots use Samsungs software.

      Their hardware is good, but when I got my Note 2 I actually sat down and messed around with the stock ROM. I can see why Apple users hate Android now. Good god they ruined it.

      But then again what kind of dummy uses bloated and buggy OEM ROM’s anyways? I had it on CyanogenMod 11 within the first hour after I opened the box.

    1. Be serious, Samsung openly steals other company’s technology. By the time they lose in court, they’ve made billions, and no court system will ban such a large company’s products. In the end, it’s a simple cost benefit analysis. We’ll steal, pay such and such for lawyer’s fees pursuing any legal means we can to stretch out the case for years, while pocketing our profits and funding the legal fees. If we do lose finally after all appeals, we’ll settle for some minuscule fraction of the profits we’ve made, and move on to the next product.

      This is Samsung’s modus operandi, their basic approach to business. It saves them R&D costs, and they can focus on investing on manufacturing improvements to crank out more and more clones faster and faster. It works well for them.

      1. I’m being very serious. Use your head. This time, they won’t have Google backing them and they will have to work around Android’s patents. This along with Microsoft’s and Blackberry’s patents as well.

        Stepping on the tails of Microsoft and Google can have the potential of having their Android and Windows licenses revoked. What will they sell then? Calculators?

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