Feeds

Research In Motion drives away with QNX

Embedded OS behind the wheel

The Power of One Infographic

Research In Motion is buying QNX Software, with the intention of pushing the embedded OS into cars and using it for a new generation of "intelligent peripherals".

RIM already has an OS for its mobile phones, but QNX has some architectural advantages as well as a foothold in the in-car entertainment business, which RIM would like to play in. So, regulatory approval permitting, RIM will become the owner of QNX in the next 45 days.

Our best experience of QNX was its single-disk demonstration: a 1.4MB image packing a multitasking OS, web browser, notepad and graphics demonstrations, proving that a desktop OS didn't need to be huge and resource hungry.

But that was back in the days when everyone thought the desktop was ready for commoditisation, a fixed feature set that could be replicated by an embedded OS such as QNX or even JavaOS - the last age of the Network Computer.

Things didn't quite work out that way, and in 2004 QNX got bought by Harman International Industries, which stuck the embedded OS into cars for "infotainment" purposes - satellite navigation, music-phone interaction and electronic dashboard applications.

This is one of the reasons that RIM's so interested in the company - getting integrated into cars is important for mobile phone companies these days, and owning the OS used will help RIM get behind the wheel. Certainly the purchase won't see Harman looking for a new OS:

"We expect to maintain our close association with QNX and [believe it is] a major step in advancing seamless connectivity and integration among intelligent devices" said Dinesh Paliwal, Harman's Chairman, President and CEO.

We don't know how much RIM is paying for QNX, as neither company is giving a figure, but the relationship between Harman and RIM is probably equally important in the long term. ®

The Power of One Infographic

More from The Register

next story
Major problems beset UK ISP filth filters: But it's OK, nobody uses them
It's almost as though pr0n was actually rather popular
Microsoft unsheathes cheap Android-killer: Behold, the Lumia 530
Say it with us: I'm King of the Landfill-ill-ill-ill
Auntie remains MYSTIFIED by that weekend BBC iPlayer and website outage
Still doing 'forensics' on the caching layer – Beeb digi wonk
All those new '5G standards'? Here's the science they rely on
Radio professor tells us how wireless will get faster in the real world
Apple orders huge MOUNTAIN of 80 MILLION 'Air' iPhone 6s
Bigger, harder trouser bulges foretold for fanbois
Oh girl, you jus' didn't: Level 3 slaps Verizon in Netflix throttle blowup
Just hook us up to more 10Gbps ports, backbone biz yells in tit-for-tat spat
GoTenna: How does this 'magic' work?
An ideal product if you believe the Earth is flat
Telstra to KILL 2G network by end of 2016
GSM now stands for Grave-Seeking-Mobile network
prev story

Whitepapers

Top three mobile application threats
Prevent sensitive data leakage over insecure channels or stolen mobile devices.
Implementing global e-invoicing with guaranteed legal certainty
Explaining the role local tax compliance plays in successful supply chain management and e-business and how leading global brands are addressing this.
Top 8 considerations to enable and simplify mobility
In this whitepaper learn how to successfully add mobile capabilities simply and cost effectively.
Application security programs and practises
Follow a few strategies and your organization can gain the full benefits of open source and the cloud without compromising the security of your applications.
The Essential Guide to IT Transformation
ServiceNow discusses three IT transformations that can help CIO's automate IT services to transform IT and the enterprise.