Alibaba Group Holding Ltd (NYSE:BABA) on Friday announced it would pivot its OS strategy to better address the high-growth Internet of Things (IoT) industry.
As Alizila reports, the Chinese e-commerce giant will even be renaming its mobile operating system accordingly:
As part of the move, Alibaba is rebranding its YunOS operating system as “AliOS,” an operating system offering OS solutions for mobile, industrial and IoT devices.
Behind the decision was the reckoning that there’s already a rapid increase of connected and intelligent devices and machines underway, and that it is going to accelerate further. Alibaba intends to put greater focus on providing infrastructure solutions to those connected devices, on top of smartphones, and become a leading operating system provider.
Researchers at Gartner indicate the number of global IoT devices will surge 31% to 8.4 billion this year, actually surpassing the world’s population for the first time. That’s up from 6.4 billion devices in 2016.
“We want to ultimately open source this operating system and provide our OS to customers across all industries and professions,” Simon Hu, Senior president of AliOS, at Alibaba’s annual computing conference. “AliOS will not only belong to Alibaba, but to everyone.”
IoT devices include essentially anything from refrigerators to thermostats that are connected to the internet.
Alibaba Group Holding Ltd shares closed at $178.45 on Friday, down $2.08 (-1.15%). Year-to-date, BABA has gained 103.22%, versus a 15.68% rise in the benchmark S&P 500 index during the same period.