OS (Operating System) – definition


A computerised system’s operating system is a fundamental piece of software. It manages all fundamental functions of the computer (or other electronic devices such as PDA, smartphone, etc.). The Operating System enables the user to install and run third-party software, sometimes known as apps for short, which typically provide the device extra capabilities.

Microsoft’s Windows, Apple’s MacOS, and different Linux variants are some of the most widely used computer operating systems.

Apple’s iOS and Google’s Android are the only OSs still showing growth for mobile devices (smartphones and tablets). They are also the two most widely used OSs. BlackBerry OS from RIM and Windows Mobile from Microsoft are at the bottom of the list. Although not so long ago still being the most used smartphone Platform, Symbian is a distant sixth.

Because touch-operated smartphones became the standard and Symbian failed to produce an intuitive touch UI, its market share has been steadily declining for years. Symbian formerly held the #1 spot. With the initial touchscreen smartphone experience provided by the PocketPCs running Microsoft’s OS over 10 years ago, Windows Mobile was a significant participant as well.

The Android System is used in more modern Blackberry devices, albeit with enhanced BlackBerry security protections.

Microsoft said on October 8th, 2017 that while they will continue to maintain the Windows Mobile operating system, they would no longer be adding any new features.

Smartphones are modern mobile devices with an appropriate OS, and users may choose from a variety of programmes, including games, productivity apps, communication or social networking apps, digital maps, etc.

It is feasible to deliver an uniform user interface (and experience) across devices from various hardware manufacturers thanks to standardised operating system platforms. Nevertheless, as Android smartphone producers want to tailor the user interface, each one provides a somewhat altered version of the original Android UI.

Although the primary participants are obvious now, throughout the years we’ve witnessed the rise of other mobile OS initiatives, including but not limited to BlackBerry’s Playbook OS, Jolla’s Sailfish OS, Samsung’s Bada OS, Nokia’s Maemo OS, Nokia’s MeeGo OS, LiMo OS, Tizen, and Palm’s webOS.