India wants to create its own operating system to compete with Google

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Android 12 (Image credit: Nick Sutrich / Android Central)

What you need to know

  • India wants to create its own operating system.
  • Union Minister of State for Electronics and IT believes Google and Apple are too dominant.
  • The country wants more competition.

The government of India is planning to create a policy that would help the mobile ecosystem in the country, the Economic Times reports. It would mean creating a native operating system that would be an alternative to Google's Android and Apple's iOS, Union Minister of State for Electronics and IT Rajeev Chandrasekhar said on Monday.

Chandrasekhar says that right now, Google's and Apple's operating systems are the two most dominant systems that are driving the hardware ecosystem in the country.

"There is no third one. Therefore, in a lot of ways there is tremendous interest in MeitY and in the Government of India to even create a new handset operating system. We are talking to people. We are looking at a policy for that," he said.

The Economic Times reports that this could mean looking for talent within start-up and academic ecosystems.

"If there is some real capability then we will be very much interested in developing that area because that will create an alternative to iOS and Android which then an Indian brand can grow," Chandrasekhar said.

It is worth adding that India already has a homegrown operating system called IndusOS, but the operating system is Android-based. IndusOS, which is available on some of the best Android devices, was launched in 2014 and in 2016 was the country's second-most popular smartphone platform.

Microsoft's Windows Phone platform was once a viable option as a third major operating system but failed to make any meaningful traction against Android and iOS, primarily as a result of the "app gap."

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Shruti Shekar
Editor in Chief

Shruti Shekar is Android Central's managing editor. She was born in India, brought up in Singapore, but now lives in Toronto and couldn't be happier. She started her journalism career as a political reporter in Ottawa, Canada's capital, and then made her foray into tech journalism at MobileSyrup and most recently at Yahoo Finance Canada. When work isn't on her mind, she loves working out, reading thrillers, watching the Raptors, and planning what she's going to eat the next day.