Alibaba is pushing its Linux-based mobile operating system (OS), Aliyun, to become the “Android of China” and provide another choice for smartphone makers.
A report from Sohu IT on Monday cited Alibaba Group’s chief strategy officer Zeng Ming as saying the Aliyun OS is gaining traction among mobile phonemakers. “We want to be the Android of China and we have quite a lot of new partners in line,” he said.
According to Zeng, the total number of smartphone vendors adopting Aliyun will increase to five from the current two, namely K-Touch and Haier, by the end of the year. However, he declined to reveal the names of other vendors.
“If I were a mobile phone vendor and my only choice is Android, I will be quite scared. Any company will want to have at least two suppliers,” Zeng said.
The original Android OS from Google faces several challenges in China as Google Search, Google Maps, and Gmail functionalities are limited in the country, he said. That is why Android is not able to provide a good user experience while Aliyun can, he added.
However, Sohu IT noted several handset makers believe it will be difficult to completely replace Android. This is due to the mobile OS’s ecosystem of phonemakers and app developers, it said.