Wednesday, October 10, 2007

Race for Linux based Mobile Operating System

Phew.. what a journey through the world of mobile internet devices, mobile web browsers and operating systems for mobile devices. I am referring to the link after link journey of mine that was spawned from the links given in this post by Schrep on Mozilla's plans for going mobile. Schrep talks about what are Mozilla's plans to take Firefox onto mobile devices. In his post he had given reference to Intel, Nokia and couple of other links pertaining to how mobile web was really taking off and that it justified Mozilla's focus for a mobile browser.

During this journey (browsing) today, one aspect is very clear, that is, there is this race towards coming up with a Linux based mobile operating system.

Let me elaborate more.

First, I read this interview of Matt Zimmerman (CTO of Ubuntu) where he explains about Ubuntu Mobile, an effort by Ubuntu to bring an Ubuntu flavor on mobile devices. He says that there is a possibility of mobile devices coming up with Ubuntu Mobile installed, as early as 2008!!!

Next I read about Nokia's Maemo initiative where they have come up with a framework for mobile internet devices built on top of any linux operating system running on any device (including mobile phones.. possibly).

Then I read this news on how ARM is trying to come up with a better version of Linux well suited for mobile devices. You can find more information about ARM Mobile Linux Platform here.

And then Intel has its own initiative on bringing Linux on mobile internet devices called Moblin.

And finally how can I forget about the rumoured Gphone which many say (like this latest news on Fotune and The Register) that it is Google's effort in bringing in their own Linux-based operating system for mobile devices.

So what do you think are the least common denominators from all the above news.

Linux is going to dominate the embedded device space:

Mobile phone vendors like Nokia, Motorola and Palm either have their versions of embedded Linux running on their phones and they are under development right now.

Its not just mobile phones but other devices like Internet Tabloids would also run on Linux.

And from my experience on set top boxes, I know Linux has made in-roads there as well.

Chipset Vendors are desperately trying to define a mobile platform based on Linux:

All mobile chipset vendors (like Intel, ARM, Broadcom, etc.) seem to be defining a Mobile Linux Platform where they are more than willing to provide support to the developer community in supporting their hardware. Reason, they see lot of potential for mobile devices and they want to make their platform developer friendly.. especially Linux friendly.

Today's browsing on internet has been very useful and given me a lot of perspective on mobile computing.

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