Originally, the first Tizen smartphones were expected in mid-2012. Later they were forecast to arrive this summer, but we are now looking at probable releases in late 2013 or early 2014 as the mobile operating system struggles to populate its app ecosystem. Enter the Tizen App Challenge: an attempt to get the attention of developers.
Tizen is a Linux-based open-source operating system that is governed by a Technical Steering Group comprising Samsung and Intel. Samsung’s motivation to build Tizen lies in a desire to move away from Google’s Android to an operating system it has a direct hand in developing, while Intel hopes to boost the presence of its mobile processors.
But the key to a successful mobile operating system is having the apps people want to use with it. Any newcomer to the market will find it tough to reach the colossal numbers available on the iTunes App Store and Google Play – just look at the Windows Store and BlackBerryWorld.
To attract users, Samsung and Intel need the developers on board first. To entice app-makers to take a chance on Tizen, they have devised the Tizen App Challenge, an app development competition with more than US$4m in prizes on offer.
Individual winning apps can be awarded as much as US$200,000 with 54 cash prizes on offer across nine categories. There’s also an additional US$50,000 up for grabs for the top 10 HTML 5 apps submitted.
Submissions for the contest close on 1 November and, following a judging period throughout the rest of the month, the winners will be announced in December.
UPDATE: We have been alerted by Twitter user Aidan O’Mahony that the terms and conditions of the Tizen App Challenge state that the contest is only open to residents of the following countries: Australia, Belgium, Canada (excluding Québec), China, France, Germany, Hong Kong, India, Japan, Korea, New Zealand, Philippines, Poland, Romania, Russia, Singapore, Slovakia, Thailand, United Kingdom, Ukraine, United States, and Vietnam.