Motorola, NEC, NTT DoCoMo, Panasonic Mobile Communications, Samsung Electronics, and Vodafone announced today their intent to establish the world’s first global, open Linux-based software platform for mobile devices.
According to Motorola, a world-class Linux-based platform aims to provide benefits for the mobile industry including lower development costs and increased flexibility, all of which contribute to the group’s objective of creating compelling, differentiated and enhanced consumer experiences.
To help guide these efforts, the companies are also announcing their intent to form an independent foundation. The founder companies’ objective is to realize the development of the platform based on the contributions of all interested stakeholders through an open and transparent process.
Focusing primarily on the joint development and marketing of an API specification, architecture, supporting source code-based reference implementation components and tools, the foundation intends to leverage the benefits of community-based and proprietary development.
Once established, the foundation aims to provide an API specification, architecture, references to open source code, new source code-based reference implementation components (to be developed and committed by foundation members) and specifications for referenced third party software. The foundation also plans to provide a test suite to assess and demonstrate product conformance to the platform specification.
While the initial foundation members plan to be primarily responsible for delivering the development of the first reference implementation of the mobile operating platform, they will also actively encourage membership participation of other companies committed to its development.
“Linux sits at the core of Panasonic Group’s software strategy, and to date we have shipped nearly 8 million Linux based handsets in the highly competitive Japanese market,” said Osamu Waki, Managing Director of Panasonic Mobile Communications. “We intend to leverage our experience to accelerate the realization of a truly global Linux-based software platform which will lead to faster time to market and increased flexibility, to deliver appealing products fit for a ubiquitous network society.”