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What's BharOS? What distinguishes it from Android and why in the news?




IIT Madras developed the mobile operating system known as BharOS. It is a project funded by the Indian government to create a free and open-source operating system for use in public and government systems.


What's BharOS? What distinguishes it from Android and why in the news?

The BharOS was developed recently by a company that was incubated at IIT Madras.


BharOS: What is it?

IIT Madras developed the mobile operating system known as BharOS. It is a project funded by the Indian government to create a free and open-source operating system for use in public and government systems.


About:

Similar to Android and iOS, it is an indigenous mobile operating system (OS). Security and privacy are its primary goals.

A mobile operating system is software that serves as the primary user interface on a smartphone. Examples of mobile operating systems include Android by Google and iOS by Apple. These operating systems enable smartphone users to interact with their devices and gain access to its features while also ensuring their safety.


By creating a secure operating system environment for users based in India, BharOS contributes to the concept of an independent India, or "Atmanirbhar Bharat."

BharOS Services are currently provided to organizations whose users handle sensitive information that necessitates confidential communications on restricted mobile apps and who have stringent privacy and security requirements.


These users need to use private 5G networks to get to private cloud services.

Features:


Over the Air Native:

BharOS would provide "Native Over the Air" (NOTA) updates, which means that security updates and bug fixes will be installed by default rather than users having to manually check for and apply them.


No preinstalled apps:

The "No Default Apps" (NDA) setting lets users disable the pre-installed apps from their mobile devices.




As bloatware, many of the pre-installed apps that come with other smartphones can slow down the device or reduce battery life, NDAs are essential.

BharOS chose an NDA design because it will give users more control over the apps on their phones based on how much trust they have in the app and the kind of data they keep on their phone.


Services for Private App Stores:

It will make use of a system called Private App Store Services (PASS), which will look over and select apps that users can use safely.


Other apps that meet BharOS' PASS requirements can be used by users.

Significance:

The project aims to encourage the use of locally developed technology and reduce smartphones' reliance on foreign operating systems.

The development of an indigenous ecosystem and a self-sufficient future represents a significant advance.


It aims to elevate India to the same level as the select few nations that currently possess such capabilities.


How long did it take to develop the operating system?


According to Kamakoti, JandK Operations spent a year developing the system.


Is it therefore entirely indigenous?


But no. As previously stated, the Linux kernel, which is a component of the Linux operating system developed by a Finnish national, serves as the foundation for BharOS. According to Kamakoti, the Linux kernel has been modified several times to create BharOS.


How is it different from Android?


Moneycontrol was informed by Kamakoti that the Android operating system is, in addition, a fork of the initial Linux distribution. It is safe to assume that BharOS and Android will share some similarities due to the fact that they both make use of the same software as the operating system's foundation.


Their offerings are where the two differ. BharOS does not have any pre-installed applications, in contrast to Android, which comes with a number of pre-installed apps like Google Maps and Chrome. What to use is up to the user.





Why is BharOS required?


The director of IIT-Madras stated that fair competition and level playing fields were required in the app market.


According to Kamakoti, when operating systems come pre-installed with apps, there is no incentive for users to try a different app if its functions are identical to those of the default app.


"In essence, that is not just and fair; unfair competition exists. I am providing a fair playground without default apps," he stated.


In addition, Kamakoti compared the presence of default apps to "strangers inside the digital home" and compared a mobile handset to a "digital home."


Kamakoti stated, "So from a user and consumer perspective, I am not forced to have something that I do not want."


On BharOS, how will data be shared and stored?


The director of the IIT-Madras stated, "Data belongs to the consumer and organization." He went on to say that an organization would have "your control and not somebody else" over the data it collects.


How is BharOS installed on a mobile device?


The director of IIT-Madras stated that BharOS can be installed on any phone that has development manuals and other information available.


Kamakoti stated, "The hardware vendor should come and share these development manuals." On January 24, when BharOS was successfully tested, a Google Pixel was one of the phones that the OS was installed on.




Where is it currently being used?


BharOS is currently being offered to organizations whose users handle sensitive information and are subject to stringent privacy and security requirements. However, the system can be easily scaled, according to Kamakoti, given BharOS's popularity and demand.


Is BharOS India's first attempt to create its own operating system?


No. As a domestic alternative to Microsoft Windows sixteen years ago, the Centre for Development of Advanced Computing (CDAC) developed Bharat Operating System Solutions (BOSS), another system derived from Linux.


The CDAC was released in four editions and is a government body under the Ministry of Electronics and Information Technology (MeitY). BOSS Desktop for personal use, BOSS Advanced Server for schools, BOSS Mool, and EduBOSS


According to BOSS's website, It is primarily designed for customers in the defense industry. An operating system that is unaffected by cyberattacks and intrusions is always required in the defense environment."


What became of BOSS?


According to a report that was published in 2014 by the Economic Times, BOSS was "dying a slow death due to lack of government support and investments." The report stated that there were few OS updates and that customer support was "inefficient." According to the report, there was a lack of coordination with hardware manufacturers for broader device support.


Now, one must wait to find out what would happen to BharOS. At this point, the Indian government appears to be playful about BharOS capacities and its true capacity.


Ashwini Vaishnaw, Union minister for electronics and information technology, stated on January 24, following testing of the operating system, " The test starts today. I don't want to become worn out. There will be numerous challenges; Additionally, there are numerous individuals worldwide opposed to the success of this system. Therefore, we must exercise extreme caution, perseverance, and work tirelessly to ensure its success.





What distinguishes BharOS from Google Android?

BharOS is similar to Google Android in that it is based on the Android Open-Source Project (AOSP). However, unlike regular Google Android phones, it does not come preloaded with Google services. Instead of being compelled, BharOS users are free to download only the apps they like or prefer.


Chrome is typically the default browser on Android phones with the stock operating system. The makers of BharOS want to work with DuckDuck Go to make DuckDuck Go the default browser.

DuckDuck Go is a browser that cares about privacy and has several features like Privacy Grade and anonymous browsing mode.


Is Android the basis for BharOS?

BharOS, developed by Google and based on the Linux kernel, is similar to Android in that it does not come pre-installed with any apps. BharOS will look and feel like Android because it is based on a Linux kernel, but users can choose not to use any apps they are unfamiliar with.


Is Android a free software?

Google is in charge of the Android open source project, which is an open source mobile operating system.


Is C++ the basis for Android?

Even though Java is Android's official programming language, not all applications are written in Java. Kotlin and BASIC are also used by the majority of developers. C++ can also be used in some unusual circumstances.





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