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LiPS Forum completes mobile Linux spec

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A group looking to establish interoperability standards to make it easier to develop applications for Linux-based mobiles has released the first cut of its specs.

The Linux Phone Standards (LiPS) Forum announced completion of the LiPS Release 1.0 specifications on Monday. LiPS said the standards will allow industry to achieve "basic interoperability" for applications and services deployed on Linux-based phones.

Shared open standards and implementations described by the spec include the LiPS reference model, telephony, messaging, calendaring, presence, address book and voice call enablers APIs.

The LiPS Forum hopes its standards will foster the use of Linux on mobile devices. The consortium was established two years ago with founding members that included ARM, France Telecom, Telecom Italia, Huawei and PalmSource. The Forum has since aligned itself with the Open Mobile Alliance, a standards body working on open standards for the mobile phone industry as well as attracting new members including BT.

Interest in running Linux on mobile phones has increased more recently since Google's November announcement that its Android mobile platform will be based on the open source operating system. The LiPS Forum is critical of the approach taken by Google and its partners.

"In contrast to recent announcements from other bodies promoting Linux-based mobile software, LiPS' output targets interoperability through real open standards and specifications, not de facto acceptance of single platform implementation," the LiPS Forum said in a statement accompanying the release of its spec. "The principal advantage to real open standards comes from choice of implementation," it added. ®

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