Monday, October 3, 2011

Tizen Consortium Takes On Android and iPhone

In a joint announcement on Sept 28, The LiMo Foundation and the Linux Foundation reported they are developing a new mobile operating system called 'Tizen'. It is a combination of the LiMo and MeeGo Linux-based mobile operating systems and will compete directly with Google's Android, Apple's iPhone and Blackberry from RIM. According to the announcement on their website:

 "LiMo Foundation is pleased to give its full endorsement of the Tizen initiative as an important step forward for the mobile industry. LiMo is confident that Tizen brings together the necessary critical mass of market and technology leadership so as to enable the establishment of a single, open and independent Linux-based platform for mobile devices."

Hosted by The Linux Foundation, Tizen is being developed by a consortium of major technology companies led by Intel and Samsung. They have worked to create an open, cross-architecture and standards based mobile platform. Tizen will  power smart phones, tablets, netbooks, smart TVs and vehicle entertainment systems.

LiMo brought together industry leaders including Motorola, NEC, Samsung, McAfee and others to help increase the adoption of Linux in mobile platforms. The Linux Foundation members include industry heavyweights such as Intel, IBM, Fujitsu, Hitachi, Oracle and Qualcomm.

Founded in 2007, the goal of LiMo was to create an Operating System which could unify the mobile industry and prevent continued fragmentation. It would provide a common computing platform which would simplify creation of third party applications by developers by using HTML5 and WAC API implementations and toolkits.

MeeGo was launched in February of 2010 and is also a Linux-based mobile platform. It is backed by Intel, Nokia and Novell. MeeGo was decended from Moblin, developed by Intel and Maemo from Nokia.

According to Morgan Gillis, Executive Director of the LiMo Foundation:

 "The most important thing about mobile Linux it that it's not owned by any one industry party, and therefore it can be adopted without any difficult business model conflicts."

Tizen holds to four basic goals: first, to use HTML5 and web standards for application development. Second, build a truly open software ecosystem. The third guarantees partners the opportunity to customize and individualize the system and finally, participation and support by many of the biggest players in the technology field.

Tizen is due to be released in early 2012 and the first Tizen-powered devices should be available to the public soon after.

Article first published as Tizen Consortium Takes on Android and iPhone on Technorati.

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