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Samsung Bada OS to be Opened Up to External Developers?

Samsung is considering turning its mobile platform Bada into an open-source project for external developers in 2012, the Wall Street Journal has reported.

The company is also said to be making Bada usable on mobile platforms such as smartphones and smart TV sets.

Although reports of these plans haven't been confirmed as yet, this news has come shortly after the Google acquisition of Motorola Mobility Inc. for $12.5 billion.

Analysts feel this puts Android smartphone manufacturers into an awkward position since Google will be in direct competition with Motorola against them on their own platform.

Through its outsourcing of the Bada platform to external developers, Samsung's actions are reflective of Google's previous moves. By allowing outside software engineers to adapt and modify the source code for Android at no charge, more developers will be readily familiar with the Bada platform and utilize it for a myriad of application purposes.

HTC CEO Cher Wang recently stated that the company is also considering purchasing a mobile operating platform.

Neil Mawston, an analyst at Strategy Analytics, said "Hardware vendor-controlled platforms that move from closed to open do not have a great track record in the past. Nokia failed dismally with Symbian, for example.”

He added: “For Samsung to be successful with opening Bada it will need to be launched in the United States market, because that is where the most powerful developers and consumers are found. If Bada does not get traction in the huge U.S. market, then the odds will be stacked against success."

Industry analysts also feel Samsung has to increase support for its alternative platforms in the high-end smartphone and tablet markets, at least in the short term, to lighten its heavy reliance on Android software.

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