Samsung is officially the first out of the gate with a Tizen-based smartphone known as the Samsung Z.
A quad-core processor clocked at 2.3GHz is tucked neatly under the 4.8-inch Super AMOLED display (1,280 x 720) and sits alongside 2GB of RAM, 16GB of flash storage and a microSD card slot for further expansion.
Elsewhere we find an 8-megapixel rear-facing camera, a 2.1-megapixel shooter for selfies, a heart rate sensor, fingerprint scanner, an ultra power-saving mode and even a download booster that uses both Wi-Fi and LTE (when both are available, of course) to accelerate download speeds. The handset packs a 2,600mAh battery and weighs in at 136 grams.
Samsung claims it is the perfect choice for those who want a unique user experience in an efficient and lightweight smartphone. The press release touts it as a premium device but it’s clearly a step or two behind the flagship Galaxy S5.
A premium Samsung smartphone powered by Tizen was expected to launch sooner but a lack of support from wireless carriers kept the handset sidelined through 2013. The delay may not have been a bad thing as it no doubt gave them more time to fine-tune the handset and the software.
Samsung already has quite a bit of experience with Tizen as the company’s lineup of Gear smartwatches and some mirrorless cameras are already running the mobile operating system.
The Samsung Z will be on display at the Tizen Developer Conference in San Francisco on June 3 and will debut in Russia in the third quarter. It’ll be available in black or gold although pricing and carrier availability hasn’t yet been disclosed.