Chinese search giant Baidu announces its Android-based Yi mobile OS

Onto the mobile services bandwagon

Chinese search giant Baidu announces its Android-based Yi mobile OS
Android is already infamous for its fragmentation and now it seems that several giant internet and e-commerce stores are taking its open source nature to the limit. 

So, following on from the news that Amazon's new Kindle tablet will use a customised version of Android, comes the announcement from Chinese search outfit Baidu that it's also releasing a proprietised version of the mobile OS. 

The yet-to-be-publicly-revealed mobile OS will be called Baidu Yi, and will enable its users to browse, purchase and download applications in similar style to Apple’s App Store or Google’s Android Marketplace. 

Like many similar companies, including Amazon and Google, Baidu has been aggressively pushing into new business areas including e-commerce and online video.

It clearly hopes a new mobile OS and supporting handsets will help it tap into a growing market for online services.

Google gone

When Google left the Chinese market last year, Baidu managed to pick up the pieces and has emerged with an 80 percent share of the search market. That’s not to say it’s the only company trying to work its way into the Chinese social media boom.

With the largest portion of the Chinese mobile market owning feature phones, a plethora of Chinese internet providers are launching new devices.

The privately-owned Alibaba Group launched a smartphone in July which runs its own OS and will feature cloud-based applications in the future.

Huawei Technologies and Sina Corp have also dipped their toes in the market launching their own smartphones; the former using its mobile infrastructure muscle to launch cloud-based devices, while the latter attempting to provide handsets for its large base of microblogging users of its social web service Weibo.

[source: Reuters]

When Matt was 7 years old he didn't write to Santa like the other little boys and girls. He wrote to Mario. When the rotund plumber replied, Matt's dedication to a life of gaming was established. Like an otaku David Carradine, he wandered the planet until becoming a writer at Pocket Gamer.