Nokia to use Linux for flagship N-series phones

HELSINKI Thu Jun 24, 2010 6:59am EDT

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HELSINKI (Reuters) - Nokia Oyj will use Linux MeeGo software in its N-series lineup, hoping the new platform will give it a better chance to battle against rivals such as Apple Inc and Google Inc.

The N-series has been Nokia's crown jewel for years and it dominated the smartphone market before Apple's iPhone was introduced in 2007.

Nokia's next flagship smartphone, the N8, will be the last N-series phone running Symbian software. Symbian remains the market leader for smartphones, but has lost market share in recent years with the rise of the iPhone.

"Going forward, N-series devices will be based on MeeGo," said Nokia spokesman Doug Dawson.

Nokia and Intel Corp in February unveiled plans to create MeeGo, merging Nokia's Linux Maemo software platform with Intel's Moblin, which is also based on Linux open-source software.

"The confirmation that MeeGo will be used for the next flagship Nseries device shows Nokia is betting the ranch on this platform to beat high-end rivals such as Apple's iPhone," said Ben Wood, research director at British consultancy CCS Insight.

Versions of the Linux operating system -- also including Google's Android, operator-backed LiMo and Palm's webOS -- have won increased share of the mobile device market.

In the first quarter the total market share of Linux phones rose to 14 percent from 8.5 percent a year ago, according to Gartner.

Linux is the most popular type of open-source computer operating system available to the public. Its direct rival on PCs is Microsoft, which charges for its Windows software and opposes freely sharing its code.

(Editing by David Holmes)

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Comments (8)
ulludapattha wrote:
Better late than never. But, does it mean that N8 is destined to be flop? Who would like to buy a phone that is running on an OS to be scrapped soon? It’s the same in cars: no one buys a model that is announced to be “the very last running on an outdated technology “. BTW, what’s the big idea to launch a product(N8) with all the fanfare after announcing that “Nokia’s next flagship smartphone, the N8, will be the last N-series phone running Symbian software”?

Nokia has missed the bus even in the run-up to the Linux- based software. So, when Nokia comes up with its new Linux- based software, it will already be too late. Sorry.

Jun 24, 2010 10:56am EDT  --  Report as abuse
Rich_Enduro wrote:
Symbian isn’t being scrapped any time soon, its being filtered down to the mid range handsets. All that’s being suggested is, symbian will no longer feature in Nokias flag ship handsets.

Jun 24, 2010 1:19pm EDT  --  Report as abuse
ulludapattha wrote:
My point is: Who would buy the N8 Nokia phone( till today the Flagship Nokia phone meant to kill the iPhone) now, that Nokia announces that it will be the last smartphone in its Flagship N- series?
Would’nt you wait for a few months to see what kind of a new smartphone Nokia comes up with in its Linux based architecture? The Nokia N8 is not priced to be a cheap or mid-tier phone that you can throw away after a few months? What is behind Nokia’s marketing strategy or logic in this N8 case? Just trying to buy time?
It would be best to scrap the N8 totally from Nokia’s portfolio and let consumers wait for the new Linux based N- series new “Flagship phone” whenever it hits the shops. That would make some sense. People don’t buy expensive smartphones just like toys for a child who throws the toys away a week after Christmas!

Jun 24, 2010 2:03pm EDT  --  Report as abuse
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