BharOS Mobile OS From IIT Madras-Linked Startup Announced: To Challenge Android OS?

BharOS Mobile OS From IIT Madras-Linked Startup Announced

An IIT Madras-linked company has developed a mobile operating system that's completely built in India and made for the country's smartphone users. The creators of "BharOS" claim the mobile OS is built on the foundation of privacy and security. Let's look at all the available details of the BharOS, which could soon power some of the smartphones in India, beginning with "organizations that have stringent privacy and security requirements".


What Is BharOS Mobile OS?

BharOS is an operating system built for smartphones. Smartphone operating systems such as Apple's iOS and Google's Android currently power millions of mobile phones that are sold in the Indian and international markets. BharOS is primarily intended for smartphones meant for Indian consumers.

BharOS has been developed by JandK Operations Private Limited (JandKops). The startup has been incubated by IIT Madras' Pravartak Technologies Foundation, a Section 8 Company established by the prestigious engineering college. The government's Department of Science and Technology (DST) supports the foundation as part of its National Mission on Interdisciplinary Cyber-Physical Systems (NMICPS).

BharOS Mobile OS From IIT Madras-Linked Startup Announced

The underlying base kernel of BharOS isn't yet known. However, its developers have indicated that BharOS can be installed on commercial off-the-shelf handsets. Hence, it is possible that the mobile OS could be based on Linux, a versatile base OS on which Google has developed its Android OS. The screenshots suggest BharOS could be based on the Android Open-Source Project (AOSP).

BharOS can be deployed without any default apps. This allows smartphone buyers to get most of the storage space on a phone. Developers' focus was reportedly on "providing users more freedom, control, and flexibility to choose and use only the apps that fit their needs."


Will BharOS Challenge Google And Android OS?

The developers of BharOS are currently offering the mobile OS to organizations with stringent privacy and security requirements "whose users handle sensitive information that requires confidential communications on restricted apps on mobiles." Simply put, BharOS is not available to the average smartphone buyer.

BharOS will receive Native Over The Air (NOTA) updates, just like Android OS, assured the developers. However, it is not clear if the mobile OS has any customization and personalization options, battery optimizations, home screen widgets, notification settings, and more.

Simply put, the current generation of smartphones available in India might not benefit from BharOS despite what developers suggest. Replacing Android OS with BharOS isn't a straightforward task. However, the creators could procure smartphones with Android OS in bulk and offer the devices with BharOS to businesses and organizations that have strict privacy and security requirements.

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