With the advent of the smartphone era, majorly two OS (Operating System) which are Google’s Android and Apple’s iOS have been dominating the market. India has a population of more than 140 crore people and smartphone users account for more than 75 crores and we are dependent on the big tech giants for OS services. Also, the problem with renowned names such as android and iOS is that they come primarily with pre-installed apps and users have limited alternatives to switch to, which creates the issue with user privacy. So, there is a need for our own indigenous OS for Indian smartphone users. An IIT Madras Incubated organization has developed BharOS, a made in India Operating System.
BharOS is an AOSP (Android Open Source Project) Operating System based on the Linux kernel. It is developed by JandKops (JandK Operations Private Limited), which is a non-profit organization incubated at Indian Institute of Technology Madras.
BharOS is basically a really clean fork of AOSP that provides an NDA (No Default Apps) setting, which means that users do not have to keep or use pre-installed apps in this mobile operating system. NDA is key as many pre-installed apps that currently ship with other smartphones can slow down the device or take a toll on battery life by acting as bloatware. Going with an NDA design for BharOS was intentional as it will let users have more control over the apps on their mobile phones based on the user’s trust in the app and the kind of data they store on their phone.
BharOS also provides access to a Private App Store Service called PASS, which is a list of apps that have been thoroughly vetted and have been verified to comply with businesses’ privacy and security needs.
BharOS would offer NOTA (Native Over the Air) updates, meaning that security updates and bug fixes will be automatically installed rather than users having to check for updates and implement them on their own.
As of now, BharOS is not rolled out for public use but developers claimed that they have given access to the OS to certain organizations with stringent privacy and security requirement. BharOS developers claim that BharOS is better than both Android and iOS in terms of features and security. On top of that, they also claim that BharOS could even improve the battery life of the device. It will also allow users to install apps of their interest and will ship with an India-based app store. BharOS is a contribution towards the idea of a self-reliant India or ‘Atmanirbhar Bharat’ by creating a secure OS environment for India-based users.
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