Chinese e-commerce giant Alibaba will invest heavily to help promote adoption of its open source cloud-based mobile OS AMOS.
The company revealed on its news blog that it will start paying handset makers a subsidy of 1 yuan (€12 cents) per AMOS device they sell for each month the purchaser remains an active user of Alibaba's mobile services.
Alibaba will also set up a 1 billion yuan ($161.6 million) fund to provide incentives for app developers to write software for the platform.
The company also announced that five additional minor Chinese handset makers have committed to launching phones using AMOS.
AMOS (Alibaba Mobile OS) began life as Aliyun, which launched in July 2011. Alibaba has not been able to convince any major handset makers to adopt the open source OS since its debut.
Acer had been planning to bring out an Aliyun device, but in September last year suddenly cancelled the launch. Alibaba has accused Google of pressuring Acer to cancel the launch by using Acer's membership in the Open Handset Alliance (OHA) as a weapon.
Google for its part has argued that AMOS is derived from Android, but is incompatible with many of the operating system's apps and program instructions. Members of the OHA agree not to ship non-compatible Android devices, the company said at the time.
But Alibaba insists that AMOS is not an Android variant (even though it can run most Android apps) and merely shares the common lineage of being based on Linux.
Android dominates the Chinese handset market, to the extent that China's telecom ministry last month put out a white paper arguing that the nation's mobile market is “too dependent” on the Google OS.