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BharOS: Key things to know about the ‘Made-in-India’ smartphone operating system

Earlier this month, JandK Operations Private Limited (JandKops), backed by the Indian Institute of Madras (IIT-M), launched the indigenous mobile operating system titled BharOS.

Here are key things to know about BharOS:
1) BharOS is actually developed from Google’s Android Operating System Package (AOSP) source code. But it doesn’t come with pre-loaded apps, which frees up more space on the phone and consumers can install the apps they really want to use, which is not the case with the Android and iOS platform.

2) BharOS software can be installed on most of the Android phones available in the market, and for obvious reasons, it cannot be installed on Apple iPhones.

3) BharOS can run most Android apps, but cannot run iOS apps. Users can download any APK (Android Package Kits) of Android apps.

4) BharOS gives users more control over the permissions apps have on the device. He/she can choose to allow only apps you trust to access certain features or data on your device.

5) JandKops developers claim that BharOS phones can be updated to the new version with the latest security patch via Over-The-Air, just like any other smartphone on the market.

6) Unlike the Google Play Store (for Android) and Apple App Store (for iOS devices), users of BharOS-based phones can access trusted apps from private app store services (PASS) specific to the organization. The latter offers access to a curated list of apps that have been thoroughly vetted and have met certain organizations’ security and privacy standards.

7) For now, BharOS is not yet available to the public. As noted above, private organizations, which emphasize user security and privacy for communication purposes, may approach JandKops to gain access to BharOS.

8) JandKops is incubated by IIT Madras Pravartak Technologies Foundation. It is supported by the Department of Science and Technology (DST), Government of India, under its National Mission on Interdisciplinary Cyber-Physical Systems (NMICPS).

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