Samsung Working on Next Version of Bada OS to Offer Android Alternative

Samsung Electronics Co. is working on the next version of its Bada mobile-phone operating system, an executive said, as the maker of Galaxy phones looks to offer the software as an alternative to Google Inc. (GOOG)’s Android.

“It must continue to evolve,” Lee Ho Soo, head of Samsung’s Mobile Solutions Center, said in an interview yesterday at the World Knowledge Forum in Seoul. “We’re doing a lot of things to provide more for users of Bada-based phones.”

Samsung is turning to Bada as Google aims to buy Motorola Mobility Holdings Inc., a deal that could reduce the Android owner’s dependence on hardware suppliers including Samsung. Suwon, South Korea-based Samsung has benefited from the popularity of Android as it looks to challenge Apple Inc. (AAPL) in the smartphone market.

The latest version of Bada, unveiled in February, includes mobile-payment support and other new features. Lee said the company hasn’t decided when it will introduce a new version of Bada or how much the software will change.

Samsung is also developing voice-recognition technology that could be used for features similar to Apple’s Siri service, Lee said.

Siri, which is included in Apple’s new iPhone 4S, lets users ask for weather updates, make calendar appointments or send messages by voice.

To contact the reporter on this story: Jun Yang in Seoul at jyang180@bloomberg.net

To contact the editor responsible for this story: Michael Tighe at mtighe4@bloomberg.net

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