Feeds

Vodafone picks a Linux-phone

LiMO lives and Symbian scowls

Top 5 reasons to deploy VMware with Tegile

The LiMO Foundation is celebrating Vodafone's endorsement with two handsets from Samsung, but the news that the Linux-based alternative isn't dead won't be received well over at Symbian.

The LiMO Foundation reckons to have already launched 42 handsets using its platform, but these are closed affairs only really of interest to network operators and handset manufacturers, with Release two (R2) LiMO opens up to BONDI and Vodafone's 360 platform, not to mention getting recognition in a market where Symbian really ought to be a shoo-in.

Vodafone has been a member of LiMO since it started, but that's not the same as actually selling handsets based on the platform which is what Vodafone will now be doing. Samsung too has been paying lip service to the other Linux-based option, while releasing Android, Symbian and Windows Mobile handsets which will now be joined by at least two using LiMO.

Vodafone is betting a lot on the 360 service, and clearly wanted branded handsets to go with it. Samsung has been churning out good handsets recently and is still willing to share branding in a way that others won't any more, so Samsung makes a sensible choice of manufacturer; but Vodafone could still have gone with one of the other operating systems around today.

But they wouldn't - Android is owned by Google, and while the Android Marketplace isn't exclusive it is recognised and would be hard to compete with. The same thing applies to Windows Mobile: operators can sell their own applications and services, but only in competition with Microsoft. That should leave Vodafone knocking on Symbian's door - the operator has already developed a Symbian client for its '360 service, so surely it would make sense to use the newly-open Symbian for handsets locked into the Vodafone 360 service?

Except that such handsets wouldn't be locked in at all: they would be open to other client applications such as SPB's excellent Mobile Shell or Handango's InHand application-downloading client, while going with LiMO keeps control firmly in the hands of the issuing operator: Vodafone.

LiMO also supports BONDI; the industry's standard AJAX extensions to allow persistence and interaction with local applications, that should allow rapid creation of the plethora of widgets and eye-candy necessary for a modern smartphone, but developers who want to make use of the extensions will have to go knocking on Vodafone's door for approval just as iPhone developers remain beholden to Apple.

LiMO makes great play of offering a "common vision" by bringing companies together, but it's a vision that puts the network operators back in the driving seat - Vodafone is the first, but every other operator will be crossing their fingers and hoping that the world's biggest can gain control of its customers before it's too late. ®

Security for virtualized datacentres

More from The Register

next story
Brit telcos warn Scots that voting Yes could lead to HEFTY bills
BT and Co: Independence vote likely to mean 'increased costs'
Phones 4u slips into administration after EE cuts ties with Brit mobe retailer
More than 5,500 jobs could be axed if rescue mission fails
New 'Cosmos' browser surfs the net by TXT alone
No data plan? No WiFi? No worries ... except sluggish download speed
Radio hams can encrypt, in emergencies, says Ofcom
Consultation promises new spectrum and hints at relaxed licence conditions
Google+ GOING, GOING ... ? Newbie Gmailers no longer forced into mandatory ID slurp
Mountain View distances itself from lame 'network thingy'
Vodafone to buy 140 Phones 4u stores from stricken retailer
887 jobs 'preserved' in the process, says administrator PwC
Bonking with Apple has POUNDED mobe operators' wallets
... into submission. Weve squeals, ditches payment plans
EE buys 58 Phones 4u stores for £2.5m after picking over carcass
Operator says it will safeguard 359 jobs, plans lick of paint
Drag queens: Oh, don't be so bitchy, Facebook! Let us use our stage names
Handbags at dawn over free content ad network's ID policy
prev story

Whitepapers

Secure remote control for conventional and virtual desktops
Balancing user privacy and privileged access, in accordance with compliance frameworks and legislation. Evaluating any potential remote control choice.
Intelligent flash storage arrays
Tegile Intelligent Storage Arrays with IntelliFlash helps IT boost storage utilization and effciency while delivering unmatched storage savings and performance.
WIN a very cool portable ZX Spectrum
Win a one-off portable Spectrum built by legendary hardware hacker Ben Heck
High Performance for All
While HPC is not new, it has traditionally been seen as a specialist area – is it now geared up to meet more mainstream requirements?
Beginner's guide to SSL certificates
De-mystify the technology involved and give you the information you need to make the best decision when considering your online security options.