SEOUL (Reuters) - Tech giant Samsung Electronics Co Ltd unveiled on Wednesday the second smartphone powered by the its own Tizen operating system, its latest bid to increase the popularity of its own software ecosystem.
Samsung said the Z3 will go on sale in India on Oct. 21 for 8,490 Indian rupees ($130.59). While this is more expensive than the 5,700 rupees launch price for its predecessor, the Z1, the new phone offers better hardware including a faster processor, a higher quality screen and improved cameras.
The world's top smartphone maker is trying to reduce its dependence on Google Inc, whose Android operating system powers Samsung's flagship Galaxy smartphones. The company has also launched other products this year powered by Tizen, including the Gear S2 smartwatch and premium televisions.
A person with knowledge of the matter told Reuters in June Samsung plans to launch more handsets running on Tizen this year. Samsung needs to attract more smartphone users to the operating system in order to gain more third-party developer support, analysts say.
The Z3's low price could attract buyers in markets like India, where smartphone penetration is still relatively low. Researcher Counterpoint said the predecessor Z1 smartphone was Samsung's best-selling smartphone in India during the second quarter, thanks in part to its low price.
($1 = 65.0125 Indian rupees)
(Reporting by Se Young Lee; Editing by Miral Fahmy)