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Samsung finally unveil Bada OS, developers challenge started

On 8th of December Samsung showed the world their new smartphone operating system called Bada. At an event, held in London, the Korean company revealed the first details about the upcoming platform and gave the start to the developers challenge that should create a good application base for the future Bada users.

The new Bada OS is all touch

The Bada OS is based around on Samsung proprietary TouchWiz User Interface – in fact the design mockups they’ve presented at the event were pretty much similar to the Samsung Pixon12 UI.

Designed for use on full-touch handsets only, Bada OS should help create “a smartphone for everyone” and increase the market share of the smartphones up to 50 percent.

Being a fully-fledged smartphone platform though, Bada will allow developers to tap into the various mobile phone features and sensors – Flash UI, web control, motion sensing, vibration control, face detection, weather, proximity, and other activity sensors. Obviously developers should have no problems developing immersive and interactive applications.

Samsung have highlighted the various service-centric features as the Bada OS differentiator. Those would location-based social networking services, device synchronization, content management, location-based services, and e-commerce services – all supported by back-end Bada servers.

As you’ll see from the 4-minute presentation video below, at this point Samsung are reaching mainly towards developers, not cellphone users. Samsung are hoping that getting the developers support will get a head start for their new OS. They’ve setup a dedicated Bada developers website and have already put up the Bada SDK for download.

And the Bada Challenge is up

Today also marks the start of “The Bada Challenge”, which is what Samsung will call their developers’ contest. It gives developers a chance to win a part of a 2,700,000 US dollars prize fund by submitting an app for the new OS.

In an attempt to create a large applications database for the new Bada platform, Samsung will also have a series of Developer Days that will take place across the world during 2010. Open to all developers, the initial events will be held in Seoul, London and San Francisco, with more events following as the year progresses.

Further on, Samsung have secured the partnership of key players in the mobile software industry. EA Mobile, Capcom, Gameloft, Konami were some of the bigger names mentioned at the event. Some of them even had high-standing representatives attending the London event to attest their support to the Bada cause.

Samsung will have a Bada application store, which would allow even non-registered users to buy applications and app payments with the mobile phone bill. With the launch of the first Bada phone, the Samsung application store will be expanded to cover up to 50 countries. The second half of 2010 shouild see the store expand worldwide.

We were able to shoot a demo video of some of the applications and games Samsung Bada OS partners are developing for the new OS.

And the first Bada smartphone to come is…

The company seems pretty determined to make this new platform work. We are yet to see its implementation. Samsung are promising their first and only handset (for now) to come in the first half of 2010.

With the first Bada handset, Samsung will be focusing the high performance segment and large sale numbers to widen the user base as quickly as possible. It’s similar to what Nokia did with their Nokia 5800 XpressMusic.

It will be their next Bada smartphones to cater for the lower segments of the market and reaching even further as one of the Bada slogans suggests: “Smartphones for everyone”.

And a few words for closing

Somehow we couldn’t help but notice that Samsung have been diligently taking presentation cues from Apple. Even the slides were designed matching some of those used by Apple when they first announced iPhone OS 2.0 and 3.0 back in the day. There’s certainly nothing wrong about that, Apple are among the best in business when it comes to putting up a nice presentation.

We also really hope that Samsung will match Apple’s success in promoting the new OS and developing its application and user base.



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