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Nokia to develop Intel-based pocket internet gadgets

Pair to pool Linux resources

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Intel and Nokia will jointly develop x86 CPUs, chipsets and a "user-friendly pocketable" internet access device to put the parts in, the two giants said today.

The new platform will go "beyond today’s smartphones, notebooks and netbooks", they proclaimed. But to us it sounds a lot like the Mobile Internet Device (MID) notion that Intel has touted for the last 18 months or so.

Nokia has already delivered the MID concept through a range of Internet Tablets, most recently the N810, launched more than a year ago to a positive crit but not mass consumer demand.

But the N810 is based on ARM chippery - so of course Intel can't acknowledge Nokia's leadership here.

Until now. Like Nokia, Intel is keen on Linux, initiating the development of Moblin, a distro for netbooks and MIDs. Nokia's own Linux tablet OS is Maemo, and the two companies today said they will "develop common technologies for use in the Moblin and Maemo platform projects" which will feed into future mobile computing devices.

The companies expect "many innovations" to result from this collaboration over time.

Moblin targets Intel's Atom, so it's a good bet that chip will be the foundation for future Nokia offerings, though the Finnish phone firm stopped short of directly committing itself to Atom-based gadgetry.

Not so Intel, which will use Nokia HSDPA/HSUPA 3G modem technology in future products that "supplement" its Wi-Fi and WiMax adaptors. Ironically, it once persuaded Nokia to offer this kind of kit for Centrino laptops, but, six months later, the two admitted it wasn't going to happen after all.

Will this new long term alliance be equally short-lived? ®

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