Visiting Tizen 2 and Bada 2 platform web documentation is enough to notice that Tizen 2 native developer experience evolved into what was known as the Bada advanced featurephone OS. For a quick comparison, a simple screenshot has been published.
Moreover Enlightenment Foundation Libraries (EFL) developers have been advertising strong Samsung's support for years. Now this support has been basically dropped in the middle of the changes that form Tizen 2.0.
Is there a chance for Tizen to become a real Linux operating system we all know, capable of running existing free software, not just HTML pages and Bada apps? There is IF the community takes over areas where Linux Foundation is passive. While there is no official support for these third-party frameworks, according to the explanation on the Tizen SDK page:
Tizen applications for mobile devices can be developed without relying on an official Tizen IDE as long as the application complies with Tizen packaging rules.
Still, is this declaration enough to gain trust in the community? Just before the release, Carsten Haitzler aka rasterman, Samsung's Principal Engineer working on Tizen and EFL guru in one person, showed some signs of irritation (an excerpt from an Tizen IRC log, original typos corrected):
tizen is not meego or maemo, it is not related
i've been working on this os now for like over 4 years
i have spent years saying "release ports to existing products"
no action, years saying what you say, i don't bother anymore
what will happen — will happen
i have no chance to change it because at least [in] samsung all decisions are top-down
ie. some executive with zero connection/knowledge of OSS is going to decide all the technical details
as i mentioned tizen is SLP [Samsung Linux Platform], SLP is a continuation of Limo
Limo is something that existed alongside and/or before maemo did
it has been in competition internally, no ball was picked up, it's a separate ball
it was renamed to tizen and put under a [Linux Foundation] banner and Intel then joined in
Intel has pushed for things to be much more open and to use OBS [Open Build System] and much infra that was used before for meego
tizen uses enlightenment and efl, thus why its then "zero porting"
that doesn't mean you will be able to use efl in apps you port/write
i do this for my own amusement, YOU may be stuck with a phone that is locked down and that doesn't allow installation of native apps at all
Shortly after that rasterman shared his look at the openess of the Linux Foundation-backed project in more depth to fight some misinformation:
Tizen, and what is in it (technically), is controlled by/decided on by the TSG [Technical Steering Group]. The TSG is a committee of executives (Samsung and Intel — you can read up on it — Imad and JD). They decide what will happen, and that's how it works. It's a top-down thing with VP's in charge. How and what they decide is up to them entirely. I have no idea what they will decide, when or where. Well officially I don't. What I may, or may not know is simply rumour and not for me to disclose, as decisions are made by the executives in charge (as above) as they see fit (which is not here in public, like on these mailing lists, IRC etc.). This (Tizen) is not like open source projects (let's say like E/EFL, Qt, GTK+, Xorg, Linux Kernel etc.), where I, or any developer, is free to talk about plans for the future and work being done, (or for that matter even knows or can find out). I understand that you are coming from that perspective, and thus logically asking those questions here, expecting answers like you would with pretty much any OSS project, but Tizen is not like that.
On the day of the release once the secret has been disclosed, rasterman concluded the reason for frustration on the Tizen IRC channel to the fellow engineers:
jooncheol Open Services Platform !!!
jooncheol bada !!
Stskeeps looks like a good compromise, EFL on the inside, OSP on outside
* Stskeeps envisions raster being taken away in a white straightjacket to the funnyfarm
raster they did that years ago
raster i then escaped
raster and wrote a wm
raster and trust me
raster its not efl on the inside
raster efl is nothing mroe than a glorified wrapper around windows and then a simple surface compositor
Stskeeps sorry to hear that
raster everything else above that is not efl
raster so u may want to reserve judgment until u've seen it all
In addition to governance and technical aspects it becomes clear that Tizen's licensing model looks complicated at the moment. Tizen is presented as an open source and standards-based operating system with popular media praising its openness when compared to Android. However Tizen's SDK contains a mix of open and closed components released together under a non-open-source Samsung's licence.
What's typical in open projects driven by corporations, a number of components internally developed by Samsung such as calendar, task manager or music player are however released under the Flora License which is most likely incompatible with requirements of the Open Source Initiative. Next releases will hopefully resolve the issues to avoid irrelevance.