Bada is a mobile operating system being developed by Samsung Electronics for use on mobile phones, ranging from low-end feature phones to high-end smartphones. The name ‘Bada’ is derived from the Korean word for ‘ocean’ or ‘sea’.
Samsung claims that Bada will rapidly replace its proprietary feature phone platform, effectively converting feature phones to smartphones. Samsung announced the Bada platform on 10 November 2009.
After the announcement, the Wave S8500 was first shown at Mobile World Congress 2010 in Barcelona in February 2010. At that time, applications running on the first Bada phone were demonstrated, including Gameloft’s Asphalt 5.
After the launch, companies such as Twitter, EA, Capcom, Gameloft and Blockbuster showed their support for the Bada platform.
In May 2010, Samsung released a beta of their Bada software development kit (SDK) to attract developers. Samsung also began the Bada Developer Challenge with a total prize of $2,700,000 (USD). In August 2010, Samsung released version 1.0 of the SDK.
The first Bada-based phone was the Samsung Wave S8500, released on June 1, 2010, which sold one million handsets in its first 4 weeks on the market.
The Samsung S8500 Wave was launched with version 1.0 of the Bada operating system. Soon after the launch, Samsung released version 1.0.2, which included minor fixes for European users. It will be available for the rest of the world in the near future. The latest version 1.2 was released with the Samsung S8530 Wave II phone. The alpha-version of Bada 2.0 was introduced on February 15, 2011.
With the release of the Samsung Wave, Samsung opened an international application store, Samsung Apps, for the Bada platform.
In July 2010, Samsung Apps had 300 applications to offer, 70% of them being free. Samsung expected to have 7000 applications in its application store by the end of 2010. It did not achieve this aim and has around 3000 applications at the end of the first quarter of 2011.
Samsung’s first phone running the Bada platform was the Wave S8500. The Wave is a slim touchscreen phone powered by Samsung’s “Hummingbird” CPU (S5PC110), which includes a 1 GHz ARM Cortex-A8 CPU and a built-in PowerVR SGX 3D graphics engine, “Super AMOLED” screen and 720p high-def video capabilities. The S8500 is however, as of now, a defunct model.
The Samsung S8530 Wave II was made available in November 2010. It has a 3.7″ Super Clear capacitive LCD touchscreen. Its preloaded with the latest Bada 1.2.