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Intel preps ARM-to-x86 porting tool for iOS apps

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Intel has said it is developing software to make it easier to port iOS applications to other mobile operating systems - in particular, MeeGo, the mobile OS favoured by the chip giant.

Doug Fisher, Intel's senior software guy, didn't say when the utility will appear, IDG reports.

In an interview with the news service, Fisher said the tool will highlight some of the changes - different system calls and suchlike - developers need to make to their iOS apps to recompile them successfully on an x86 processor.

iOS devices use ARM chippery and it's not compatible with Intel's silicon.

iOS apps are typically coded in Objective C and tie themselves into the operating system by relying on the services it provides. A fair few iOS system calls can surely be paired with MeeGo equivalents, but plenty of others may not be. So-called "universal" iOS apps can even contain separate binaries and resources for iPhones and iPads.

That said, Objective C's modular Model-View-Controller software design ethic should aid porting by separating out data manipulation code from the routines that handle the UI and user interaction.

Intel is keen to get developers creating apps for it Atom CPU, whether the programs will run under MeeGo or Windows. Last month, it opened its online AppUp applications store to the public. ®

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