Samsung launches world's first Tizen phone

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Consumer electronics giant Samsung is taking on Android and Apple’s iOS with the launch of its Samsung Z, the first smartphone to come with the Tizen operating system.

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Samsung phones currently use Android, but the South Korean company has been working with chipmaker Intel to develop Tizen as an alternative OS.

“Samsung is committed to enhancing the mobile experience of consumers with innovation that is both personal and unique to their needs,” said DJ Lee, Samsung’s president of mobile communications.

“The Samsung Z integrates the power and adaptability of the Tizen platform, enabling users to browse the web faster and utilise applications more effectively.”

The company said that the Samsung Z will be on show at the Tizen Developer Conference in San Francisco this week, and it will launch the phone in Russia in the third quarter of 2014.

The Z comes with a 4.9-inch HD Super AMOLED display and a 2.3 GHz quad-core processor, an 8-megapixel rear-facing camera and a 2.1-megapixel front-facing camera, and includes a fingerprint sensor.

Samsung said that the device “delivers a fast, optimal performance with improved memory management. The Tizen-based Samsung Z offers a faster startup time and immediate multi-tasking capabilities, The Samsung Z fully supports superb 2D and 3D graphic qualities, smoother scrolling and an improved rendering performance for web browsing.”

The Samsung Z is not the company’s first device to run Tizen – the latest version of its smartwatch, Galaxy Gear 2, uses the OS, unlike its Android-powered predecessor.

Stuart O’Connor