Beginning Tizen Development on the Gear S

Samsung Gear S

I’ve been reading about Tizen, the mobile OS co-sponsored by Samsung and Intel, for almost 2 years, but I’ve waited to begin learning Tizen development until I could obtain a commercially available device. The Gear S is the latest in Samsung’s smartwatch line (Cnet has a detailed review) and at Uncorked Studios we have a few devices on loan for a new project.

Gear S feels heavy on smaller wrists, and my teammate observed that the curved screen has screen glare in every kind of light. Our test devices do not have SIM cards, and are paired with SIMless Samsung phones used for development, so I haven’t been able to explore the more interactive features of Gear S, but that’s fine, my goal is to show how to configure the Gear S to sideload Tizen apps so we can start developing.

  1. Install the correct Tizen SDK for Wearable package. This is importantly different from the Tizen SDK (even with the Wearable SDK option installed) because it contains the documentation and tool for registering your author certificate and device certificate with Samsung.
  2. Enable USB debugging on the Gear S in Settings->Gear Info->USB Debugging. Connect the Gear to your computer.
  3. In your IDE, the bottom left pane should show your connected device. Right-click on it and choose Properties. Copy the Device Unique Identifier (DUID).
  4. Follow the steps to register your author certificate with Samsung Developer Center. For me, this meant creating a new certificate signing request (CSR) and Samsung Account. You may also choose to generate the CSR using an Android keystore.
  5. Save your author.crt when you receive the email from Samsung (be sure to check your spam folder).
  6. Request a device certificate using your new author.crt and the DUID you copied from looking at the device properties. Look for another email from Samsung with your device certificate and password. Save your new device certificate and enter the path to device-profile.xml in your certificate request form in the IDE. Be sure not to rename author.crt or device-profile.xml, the file names are important.
  7. Right-click on the connected device in the lower left pane and choose Permit to Install Applications. This copies device-profile.xml to /home/developer on the device.

That’s it, you may now write your first Tizen app and install it on the Gear S! The above steps don’t need to be done in exact order, but they do all appear to be necessary to avoid the SIGNATURE_INVALID [22] failed error when trying to install apps. Tizen is evolving rapidly, so I expect this configuration procedure will change in upcoming releases.

Tizen apps are HTML5 and JavaScript based, with support for jQuery Mobile as well as Samsung’s UI toolkit. The IDE has plenty of examples and templates which I’m finding useful for exploring.

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