It is just not easy to sell people on the idea of a new smartphone platform. Today, we saw Canonical fall epically short of its $32M fundraising goal for the Ubuntu Edge, effectively spelling the death of the project (though Ubuntu will live on in other hardware). And earlier this summer, rumors more than once suggested that Samsung was running into trouble with its own Tizen platform, pushing back launch plans in order to address app shortages. So, instead of an August or September launch, as had once been suggested, we were hearing that October of November might be more likely, instead. Today we get some specific dates to consider, with assertions that Samsung intends to formally launch Tizen at this year’s Samsung Developers Conference in San Francisco.
That event is scheduled to take place from October 27 through 29, fitting neatly right in the middle of that October/November window. Certainly, the materials Samsung has prepared to promote the conference advertise devs getting “an introduction to Tizen.” We can understand how that may not mean the full product launch we’re hoping for, but that’s the rumor going around, anyway.
From all we’ve heard, Tizen could launch with some decent hardware (or at least far more so than peers like Firefox OS are getting), but nay-sayers have already been dismissing the project as “almost dead.” As such, its fate is still very much up-in-the-air, and it may not be until early 2014 when we get a better sense of just what role the OS will have in Samsung’s smartphone business moving forward.