updated 03:25 pm EDT, Fri May 15, 2009
Intel and Nokia Make oFono
Intel and Nokia have been discovered as teaming on a new, Linux-based operating system for mobile phones. Labeled as the oFono project, the effort is separate from both companies' usual Linux projects and is meant to provide an open-source alternative in the same vein as Android. The foundation would be minimal but heavily extensible, letting companies add their own network stacks and other features rather than requiring oFono to supply most on its own.
Whether the platform will be considered useful for smartphones or not isn't mentioned by oFono, though a job listing found by Phonedog that is likely connected to Nokia is asking for a graphical interface expert familiar with the OpenGL visual standard for both 2D and 3D as well as Qt, a GUI app framework owned by Nokia.
What either of the involved companies plans to do themselves with oFono isn't evident. Nokia has been the chief proponent of Symbian and took steps last year to both make the platform independent as well as to gradually open-source its code; it already produces a Linux-based OS, Maemo, but reserves that for large devices like its N810 tablet. Intel is responsible for its Moblin OS but intends this for Mobile Internet Devices and other larger computing devices.