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IIT Madras incubated firm develops BharOS that has no default apps

IIT Madras incubated firm develops BharOS that has no default apps
Photo Credit: IIT Madras Twitter handle
19 Jan, 2023
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Homegrown firm JandK Operations Private Limited, which was incubated in the Indian Institute of Technology (IIT), Madras, has developed a new operating system called BharOS. The company said that the OS can be installed on commercial handsets and comes with no default apps, which allows users more choice on what apps they want on their devices.  

Further, the company said that BharOS also provides access to trusted apps from organisation-specific Private App Store Services (PASS). It has a curated list of apps that have been vetted security and privacy standards of organisations. 

BharOS services are currently being offered to organizations with strict privacy and security requirements.  

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“BharOS offers ‘Native Over The Air’ (NOTA) updates that can help to keep the devices secure. NOTA updates are automatically downloaded and installed on the device, without the need for the user to manually initiate the process. This ensures that the device is always running the latest version of the operating system, which includes the latest security patches and bug fixes. With NDA, PASS, and NOTA, BharOS ensures that Indian mobile phones are trustworthy,” said Karthik Ayyar, director, JandK Operations. 

JandKops is incubated by IIT Madras Pravartak Technologies Foundation, which is funded by the Department of Science and Technology’s (DST) National Mission on Interdisciplinary Cyber-Physical Systems (NMICPS). 

“BharOS Service is a Mobile Operating System built on a foundation of trust, with a focus on providing users more freedom, control, and flexibility to choose and use only the apps that fit their needs,” said V. Kamakoti, Director, IIT Madras. 

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The OS was launched on the day when the Supreme Court refused to grant a stay to Android-maker Google, on a fine of ₹1337.76 crore by the Competition Commission of India (CCI). The CCI, in October, accused Google of breaking competition laws by pre-installing its own apps on Android devices and not allowing users to remove them.  

The Indian government is also said to be working on an indigenous mobile operating system to compete with Google’s Android and Apple’s iOS, called IndOS.