Oh my, it’s time for the annual Tizen forecast!
Let’s see how the old forecast held?

Samsung will be the only brand to ship Tizen phones in 2017 and that will mean 1 or 2 new phone models running Tizen from Samsung during the full calendar year 2017.

(and if you demand me to pick only one number then I say we will see one model only)

–Anonymous ExNokian, January 30th, 2017.

Only one phone shipped last year, Samsung Z4.

What is the forecast for this year then? Will there be even one Tizen phone this year? No rumors or leaks, everything is silent on Tizen front. In the past Samsung was worried that they could not make Android phones cheap enough to replace feature phones, but the issue seems to be mostly gone with latest low end Androids. The way I see it, Samsung does not have the problem Tizen would solve.

Furthermore: When the first Tizen phone was announced, there was a joking note: “Finally you can have TouchWiz without apps.” It still makes the point: why would Samsung want to develop own OS to sell smartphones without access to apps to the lowest of the low end (where no money can be made) when Android does the same for free – with apps?

So I’ll make a statement for this year:

Samsung will be the only brand to ship Tizen phones in 2018 and that will mean 0 to 1 new phone models running Tizen from Samsung during the full calendar year 2018.
If you demand me to pick between zero and one model, I say no Tizen models at all will come from Samsung this year.

The usual details apply:

  • We may hear announcements of some other brand “planning to use Tizen” but those promises will not materialize in 2018.
  • We may hear Samsung promising one or more models but none of them will reach the store shelves in 2018. (Or one at best.)
  • We may see developer devices, but they don’t count to my forecast as consumers can’t buy those from a store.
  • Yes we will still see more Tizen TV sets, smart watches, washing machines, etc. but no new smartphone models running Tizen OS – (or one at maximum).

Then to the usual closing in my forecast – I’ve been saying this for years since my humble assumption was that Microsoft cannot let themselves be dropped out of mobile. However, under the current CEO Microsoft has moved their approach into a new one. I just checked and my iPhone runs 12 apps from Microsoft (and this is after I have uninstalled Skype). To me it shows that Microsoft has NOT dropped out of mobile, whether they have their own mobile OS or not. My usual closing calls:

My stand has been (and will be) that Samsung will kill Tizen for smartphones before Microsoft kills Windows for smartphones.

–Anonymous ExNokian, January 30th, 2017.

Now there was a problem in this: if no definite statement is given, what is the time when either Microsoft or Samsung has quit? In the end the discussion here made me use the date of the latest released phone running the OS in question as the measurement stick. Currently it is Samsung Z4 running Tizen (and no new phones running Windows Mobile can come up since that’s what Microsoft said.

I’m not restating this forecast. There is no point because the merge between different versions of Windows makes judging this forecast difficult: Allegedly Microsoft is STILL working on “surface phone” that could run win32 desktop apps – desktop Windows packed into small casing.
If so, it is running Windows Desktop. Can we even say that there is a “windows mobile” then? And on the other hand, if there is a phone shipping that runs Windows, how could we say that Microsoft is not making OS for smartphones?
(This is why I used the wording “Windows for smartphones“. It covers also the case Microsoft manages to port full-featured Windows to mobile phones.)

Currently it seems my forecast on this failed last year. IF the “Surface Phone” comes out (and no new Tizen phones come up after it), Microsoft will win and I will be right. Otherwise Samsung won and I was wrong.