Samsung’s Nascent Tizen Surpasses BlackBerry In Global Smartphone OS Sales

The mountain that stands between BlackBerry and widespread relevance just got a little bit higher and steeper. How so? According to the latest report published by Strategy Analytics' Wireless Smartphone Strategies (WSS) services, Samsung's Tizen operating system just overtook BlackBerry as the third largest smartphone OS in the world.

Android registered a "slight year-on-year" bump in market share, while Apple gained ground on "strong demand for new iPhone models," the report states. Meanwhile, Microsoft, BlackBerry, and Firefox all "drifted down," giving Tizen an opportunity to jump in rank. And that's what it did, with "tangible growth" allowing it to overtake BlackBerry, now been relegated to fourth place for the first time ever.

Tizen

The results are promising for Samsung and its revised strategy for Tizen. Initially it seemed that Samsung hoped to grow Tizen into a dominant force in the smartphone sector so that it wouldn't be so reliant on Google and its Android platform. More recently, Samsung's been focusing on growing Tizen in emerging markets with releases like the Z3, along with putting it in products like smartwatches and televisions.

While all this is happening, BlackBerry, once a market leader in the smartphone sector, is struggling just to survive. The Canadian outfit has tried numerous different things to regain its former glory, everything from changing its name (remember when it was called Research In Motion, or RIM?) to, more recently, adopting Android.

BlackBerry Priv

The latter is viewed as a key strategy towards the company turning a profit in hardware.

"We are focused on making faster progress to achieve profitability in our handset business. Today, I am confirming our plans to launch Priv, an Android device named after BlackBerry’s heritage and core mission of protecting our customers’ privacy," BlackBerry CEO John Chen said in August when announcing the company's second quarter performance. "Priv combines the best of BlackBerry security and productivity with the expansive mobile application ecosystem available on the Android platform."

At the time, BlackBerry reported revenue of just $491 million for the quarter, the lowest they've been in a decade.

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