With news that Google’s Android-push will take just a bit longer than we would prefer, it’s fitting that Nokia has just announced that it will be working to bring together the fragmented Symbian environment under a single, open-source umbrella.
Nokia has been working closely with Symbian for years with S60 development, and it seems that the Finnish handset manufacturer wants to go open-source with their mobile OS. To that end, Nokia will be increasing their already substantial stake in Symbian Limited in order to take Symbian OS and S60 open-source.
Nokia has joined forces with AT&T, LG Electronics, Samsung Electronics, STMicroelectronics, Texas Instruments and Vodafone to form the non-profit Symbian Foundation in an effort to further Symbian development as an open-source mobile platform. The Symbian Foundation was formed to increase awareness and appeal of a unified Symbian platform as well as provide the developers with a unified development environment for an open-source Symbian. The move will unite the Symbian OS, S60, UIQ, and MOAP platforms to give Google’s open-source Android platform a run for its money.
Sony Ericsson and Motorola, after recently partnering up on UIQ, have announced that they’ll be contributing the UIQ bits to the Symbian Foundation. DoCoMo has announced that it will contribute their MOAP code to the Symbian Foundation. And, with Nokia bringing their Symbian OS and S60 contribution to the table, the Symbian Foundation wil have the necessary components to develop a unified mobile platform with a common UI framework.
Pending the acquisition of Symbian Limited, the Symbian Foundation is expected to go live in 1H 2009 – just in time to give the Android folks a serious sweat.