Feeds

Who will win the epic battle for the kitchen OS?

The who now?

Beginner's guide to SSL certificates

Like to sing along to something as you cook dinner? Know this - the humble kitchen radio is about to be obliterated by the mighty Media Phone, with embedded specialist Arc bidding to become its default platform.

While the OS platforms for mobile phones and small cheap computers are the subject of fierce debate, the choice of OS to run in the kitchen remains an open field, with few players even realising the battle has begun - the ideal time for a new player to launch itself as the ideal solution. Let us not forget that a long time ago Bill Gates reckoned the kitchen would be the natural environment for the PC.

Verizon's Hub Media Phone

The next OS battle ground - beside the biscuit tin

The Media Phone is basically a telephone with a screen; anyone old enough to remember the ICL One Per Desk will know the concept, only this time it's aimed at the kitchen radio.

ARC makes embedded systems from the silicon up, and has released a new stack that incorporates everything from chips to audio and video drivers. The OEM just provides a box in which to put the hardware, and the small matter of a user interface, and they've got a Media Phone.

ARC reckons its experience with audio is going to help a lot here, though devices like O2's Joggler and Verizon's Hub (pictured above) are already heading into the same space.

The Joggler and other competition are heavily biased towards widgets and online content; which makes sense for a gadget that should be able to rely on mains power and always-on connectivity, but Arc doesn't provide the GUI, let alone the kind of AJAX widgets that will surely define the worktop computing environment. Arc might be able to provide the chips and an OS, but OEMs looking to source a widget engine might find themselves an alternatives to those too.

It's inconceivable that we won't see Android in this space; and Symbian could also be well placed if it could find the time. Instat reckons 31 million Media phones will generate between $4bn and $8bn from consumers come 2013, with business spending $3.3bn. If those figures are even half right, that will attract Microsoft's attention too.

Arc's platform is based on its own chips, its own OS and its own stack - the kind of proprietary solution that used to be so popular but now risks finding itself standing alone in the kitchen at the end of the party, at best. ®

Beginner's guide to SSL certificates

More from The Register

next story
Preview redux: Microsoft ships new Windows 10 build with 7,000 changes
Latest bleeding-edge bits borrow Action Center from Windows Phone
Google opens Inbox – email for people too thick to handle email
Print this article out and give it to someone tech-y if you get stuck
Microsoft promises Windows 10 will mean two-factor auth for all
Sneak peek at security features Redmond's baking into new OS
UNIX greybeards threaten Debian fork over systemd plan
'Veteran Unix Admins' fear desktop emphasis is betraying open source
Entity Framework goes 'code first' as Microsoft pulls visual design tool
Visual Studio database diagramming's out the window
Google+ goes TITSUP. But WHO knew? How long? Anyone ... Hello ...
Wobbly Gmail, Contacts, Calendar on the other hand ...
DEATH by PowerPoint: Microsoft warns of 0-day attack hidden in slides
Might put out patch in update, might chuck it out sooner
prev story

Whitepapers

Choosing cloud Backup services
Demystify how you can address your data protection needs in your small- to medium-sized business and select the best online backup service to meet your needs.
Forging a new future with identity relationship management
Learn about ForgeRock's next generation IRM platform and how it is designed to empower CEOS's and enterprises to engage with consumers.
Security for virtualized datacentres
Legacy security solutions are inefficient due to the architectural differences between physical and virtual environments.
Reg Reader Research: SaaS based Email and Office Productivity Tools
Read this Reg reader report which provides advice and guidance for SMBs towards the use of SaaS based email and Office productivity tools.
Storage capacity and performance optimization at Mizuno USA
Mizuno USA turn to Tegile storage technology to solve both their SAN and backup issues.