Intel And Nokia Smash Moblin And Maemo, Develop MeeGo Mobile Operating System
At Mobile World Congress, Intel and Nokia announced that they would be merging two of the most talked about mobile platforms in order to form a single OS for "future computing devices." The new OS is called MeeGo, and it's a combination of Maemo (which runs on Nokia's N900) and Moblin (which is on a number of Atom-based MID devices). Both systems are Linux-based, so merging them together shouldn't be too incredibly difficult, but it's still interesting to see two standalone OSes becoming one. We can't say for certain what the real underlying motives were, but we're guessing that the two realized just how intense the mobile OS space was getting, and with Microsoft revamping their own mobile OS today, there's hardly room for second-tier rivals.
Nokia N900 running Maemo 5
Reportedly, MeeGo will remain Linux based and will support "multiple hardware architectures across the broadest range of device segments, including pocketable mobile computers, netbooks, tablets, mediaphones, connected TVs and in-vehicle infotainment systems." It's obvious that MeeGo will have a broader reach than Maemo and Moblin had on their own, but we still aren't sure that the two will be able to dominate the mobile landscape by simply making MeeGo available to a whole bunch of products. This little worry didn't keep the two from confession that they expect MeeGo to be "adopted widely by global device manufacturers, network operators, semiconductor companies, software vendors and developers," but no specific partnerships were made public.
We're also not sure what the end product will look like. The two companies are saying that MeeGo lends the best of Maemo with the best of Moblin to create an open platform for multiple processor architectures, with it building on the capabilities of the Moblin core OS. As odd as this sounds, we get it. The MID/UMPC realm is a niche, and it's likely that it will remain that way. Having two major Linux-based operating systems filling a small space was sort of unproductive, so merging these into one may actually move the segment forward if they can manage to develop a product that is greater than the sum of its parts. No pressure, Nokiatel.
MeeGo enables an open ecosystem for rapid development of exciting new user experiences
- Global leaders Intel Corporation and Nokia merge Moblin and Maemo to create MeeGo*, a Linux-based software platform that will support multiple hardware architectures across the broadest range of device segments, including pocketable mobile computers, netbooks, tablets, mediaphones, connected TVs and in-vehicle infotainment systems.
- MeeGo offers the Qt application development environment, and builds on the capabilities of the Moblin core operating system and reference user experiences. Using Qt, developers can write once to create applications for a variety of devices and platforms, and market them through Nokia's Ovi Store and Intel AppUpSM Center.
- MeeGo will be hosted by the Linux Foundation and governed using the best practices of the open source development model. The first release of MeeGo is expected in the second quarter of 2010 with devices launching later in the year.
- Nokia and Intel expect MeeGo to be adopted widely by global device manufacturers, network operators, semiconductor companies, software vendors and developers.