China’s Government-Approved OS Wants To Take On Android & iOS


BlackBerry and Windows Phone might be having a hard time trying to break up the monopoly on mobile software held by Android and iOS, but that hasn’t stopped the Chinese government from having a go with a platform of its own.

Built by a company called Shanghai Liantong in conjunction with ISCAS (Institute of Software at the Chinese Academy of Sciences), COS — which stands for China Operating System — aims to take on Android and iOS by providing better localization for things like language input and cloud services.

ISCAS has criticized iOS for being a closed platform that has little flexibility, and it doesn’t like Android because of its fragmentation problem. But the Linux-based COS, which not only powers smartphones and tablets but PCs, TVs, and set-top boxes as well, looks a lot like the latter — as you’ll see in the video below.

None of the features shown in the video are new; they’re all available on the platforms COS is hoping to compete with. But for mobile users in China, COS could be a better option due to its focus on localization — and that’s certainly what its creators are banking on.

HTC appears to have some involvement in COS, which is probably why a number of its devices are featured in the video. But the Taiwanese firm has refused to talk about it, telling Engadget that it “remains focused on working with its current OS partners,” and does not “comment on speculation regarding other OS.”