China launches government-approved mobile operating system

By on January 16, 2014, 4:30 PM
apple, iphone, android, htc, china, operating system, mobile os, cos, china operating system

The Chinese government has announced a mobile operating system designed to break what they consider to be the foreign software monopoly. The state-approved OS is known as COS (China Operating System) and was developed jointly with China's Institute of Software at the Chinese Academy of Sciences (ISCAS) and Shanghai Liantong.

The operating system is open-source and based on Linux with what appears to be heavy influence from HTC. There’s nothing official that says HTC was involved although previous rumors suggested that was the case. The OS itself looks and functions much like Android (and specifically, HTC’s Sense 5) based on what little is shown in the embedded promo video.


As with any other mobile operating system, the software works on not only smartphones but televisions, set-top boxes and tablets. And from what we’ve been hearing thus far, Android apps will more than likely run on the platform.

During yesterday’s launch, the head of the ISCAS criticized Apple’s iOS for being a closed ecosystem. What’s more, officials pointed out Android’s fragmentation issues while both it and Windows Phone were blasted over poor security.

It will be interesting to be seen just what sort of impact COS will have on competing operating systems in the region, especially considering the recent deal that Apple was able to ink with China Mobile. The iPhone will go on sale through the company starting tomorrow following negotiations that started in 2008 with then-CEO Steve Jobs.




User Comments: 15

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Guest said:

And I thought American commercials were corny, this takes the cake.

H3llion H3llion, TechSpot Paladin, said:

Haha! I like how they stole Sony Ericson's logo... *rolls eyes*

Guest said:

All the malware you will ever need included...

1 person liked this | Guest said:

COS more like POS

cliffordcooley cliffordcooley, TechSpot Paladin, said:

^^^Troll Alert!

Even I could see it this time.

Guest said:

Why would anyone (especially Chinese) use this? Would you use an OS the government endorses? I don't care if it's the government of Switzerland, the OS will have backdoors!

2 people like this | Raoul Duke Raoul Duke said:

Why would anyone (especially Chinese) use this? Would you use an OS the government endorses? I don't care if it's the government of Switzerland, the OS will have backdoors!

No it will only have Chinese backdoors, all other OS's have NSA and GCHQ backdoors so you now have a choice.

2 people like this | cliffordcooley cliffordcooley, TechSpot Paladin, said:

Hmm, a choice! Being monitored by China or US? Does it really matter? Being watched is being watched, regardless who it is.

I think I prefer being watched by China. Greater distance between us, and I'd have more time to cool off before I went postal.

1 person liked this | Skidmarksdeluxe Skidmarksdeluxe said:

China to it's citizens... "You will use COS and not the capitalist pigs iOS and Android system which can be and is monitored by the NSA, With COS, you'll not be **ahem** monitored but we will know when you're plotting a coup, planning other nefarious deeds or even taking a dump, blah blah blah... Failure to comply with our 'request' will see you Android/iOS phones being confiscated, crushed into little pieces and you being liable for a sentence of listening up to 24 hours of Mao Zedong speeches".

Guest said:

What is funny is that they banned the iPhone sales in China till now so they can have time to finish the copy of it so they can compete. All the finger gestures is iPhone art. Even the icons look the same and spaced the same on the screen. To bad Apple won't be able to claim prior art in China since they are released at the same time. Also all the stuff is similar to air play.

1 person liked this | Guest said:

When US corporations started salivating about the Chinese market, I predicted that China will take all the expertise (and $$) they could from US and the west and eventually they will freeze out those corporations from the China market. The Chinese have never forgotten the Opium wars. Western corporations were able control China for a long time after that.

Little by little China will make sure that there markets will be dominated by Chinese companies.

Guest said:

I think I prefer being watched by China. Greater distance between us, and I'd have more time to cool off before I went postal.

If you're not Chinese then you have nothing to worry about. For the Chinese, especially the dissidents, it's a different story.

Raoul Duke Raoul Duke said:

China to it's citizens... "You will use COS and not the capitalist pigs iOS and Android system which can be and is monitored by the NSA, With COS, you'll not be **ahem** monitored but we will know when you're plotting a coup, planning other nefarious deeds or even taking a dump, blah blah blah... Failure to comply with our 'request' will see you Android/iOS phones being confiscated, crushed into little pieces and you being liable for a sentence of listening up to 24 hours of Mao Zedong speeches".

Don't forget this is the country that has a controlled internet, and for example banned Battlefield 4, expects all retail stores to dispose of inventory and if you have bought it, repent and uninstall it or the State will have a re-education camp spot open for you.

cliffordcooley cliffordcooley, TechSpot Paladin, said:

There is no country that is without problems, I don't know why anyone would want to talk bad about a country other than their own. Problems are so thick in this country, I'm not going to take time concentrating on China's problems. Besides who am I to be labeling problems for China, that is a decision the citizens of China will have to do.

Raoul Duke Raoul Duke said:

There is no country that is without problems, I don't know why anyone would want to talk bad about a country other than their own. Problems are so thick in this country, I'm not going to take time concentrating on China's problems. Besides who am I to be labeling problems for China, that is a decision the citizens of China will have to do.

I just have a hard time rationalizing the way our countries do business with a country that has the same party in power that killed 40 million of its own people during the Cultural Revolution (1949-75) through execution, starvation, overwork, death camps, and according to Reuters spends (2012) 701.8 billion yuan ($111 billion dollars) on 'internal security' as well as 670.3 billion yuan ($106.4 billion) on defence, not even detailing what they have done in Tibet. We have paradise compared to what the Chinese people have endured.

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