Multitasking-centric OS gets sneak peek in video
Jolla, the smartphone company started by a team of ex-Nokia employees, has released a pair of new videos showing off the OS that will power its handsets, SailFish OS. The videos showcase the user interface and multitasking capabilities of the operating system, which is said to be due for release some time in 2013. In one video, viewers get a peek at the kind of hardware that SailFish will run on, but details on Jolla's actual handsets remain scarce.
Nokia, a victim of its own success and poor choices
How does a company that was the leading mobile handset maker in the world for 15 years, and $11 Billion in cash just five years ago become an also ran? That’s a question many at Nokia must have asked themselves as they watched it lose control of its own destiny and instead become highly reliant on a strategic alliance with Microsoft to survive. A former manager with the Finnish phone giant spoke with Electronista about the company's unraveling over the past five years, which he traced to Nokia's decision to pursue both Symbian OS and Maemo OS as two distinct development initiatives.
Nokia sheds last ties to in-house software initiatives
Nokia has sold off its Qt app tools unit as the company leans further on its partnership with Microsoft, reports Bloomberg. The Finnish handset maker offloaded the Qt unit including around 125 staff to long-time partner Digia signaling the end of its in-house software development efforts. Nokia had bought into Qt as a cross-platform application development framework to encourage developers to write apps for its now defunct Symbian and MeeGo smartphones.
Nokia backs new MeeGo startup Jolla, hands over patents
Jolla, the newly-founded Finnish startup aiming to resuscitate Nokia's abandoned MeeGo mobile OS, has received a helping hand from Nokia, reports ItViiko. The code underpinning MeeGo, like Android, is Linux-based and open source and came into existence when Nokia and Intel formed an alliance to merge Nokia's Maemo OS with Intel's Moblin OS. This still left a number of OS patents in Nokia's hands, which it has graciously handed over to Jolla to help the company get off the ground.
MeeGo resuscitated by ex-Nokia employees and MeeGo community
A team of ex-Nokia employes have joined with a group of MeeGo coders to form a new smartphone company dubbed Jolla. Jolla is Finnish for 'dinghy,' which suggests that its goal is to create a life raft for the stalled platform and push it forward commercially. The new organization is headed up by a former 11 year veteran of Nokia Marc Dillon who was the Principal Engineer of its Maemo OS, before it was merged with Intel's Moblin OS to create MeeGo.
Nokia rumored to be working on two MeeGo phones
Nokia is working on two entry-level MeeGo phones as part of its Next Billion Group project, NetbookNews heard from sources from within that group. The mission of the group is to bring the Internet to a billion people who currently don't have access to it in many third-world countries. To do so requires a free operating system, which Windows Phone isn't, while Symbian is run by Accenture and being phased out from Nokia's smartphone mix.
Nokia N9 hacked to run on Android 4.0.3
NITDroid Development forum member e-yes has just shared a custom ROM of Android 4.0.3 for Nokia's N9. Dubbed Project Mayhem, the hack lets users choose which OS they want to boot into after powering the phone up. The handset usually runs on MeeGo, and many of the key functions are retained when running Anroid.
Nokia patented slide to unlock on iPhone launch
A just-published but long in the making Nokia patent filing has revealed that Nokia has been working on a slide-to-unlock patent of its own. The approach would have users slide an icon on the screen to 'uncover' app icons. By then moving to an unlock area, users would have a two-stage unlock that could launch any app accessible from the home screen.
Nokia designer talks about even more minimalism
Nokia's newly promoted executive design VP, Marko Ahtisaari, has hinted in a interview that he'd like Nokia's phones to go even more minimalist than today. He noted to the Guardian that designs like the Lumia 900 were showing where Nokia was going, where it had dropped the USB door cover to produce a direct port. He could imagine at one point going without any connectors, although the newspaper overreached in presuming this meant definite plans for wireless charging.
Nokia promises MeeGo Harmattan 1.2 beta to devs
Nokia has revealed it will soon release the Meego Harmattan 1.2 beta update to developers who already have the N950 developer phone. The update is said to contain more than 3,000 new features, fixes and other changes, with video calling, folders for the home screen, and new camera and gallery apps rumored to be among them.
Bada and Tizen to merge platforms I
Samsung's Senior VP of Contents Planning Tae-jin Kang in a discussion Friday gave surprise word that his company's Bada and Intel's Tizen would merge. The strategy mapped out for Forbes would let Tizen run any apps written for Bada. Ultimately, the two would end up sharing the same developer interfaces and effectively share the same roots.
LG could be first to use Intel Atom in phones
A rumor spread Friday has asserted that LG will be the first to make phones using Intel's Medfield platform for Atom chips. Citing unnamed executives from both companies, the Korea Times would have LG use the CES expo to show at least one Android smartphone running on an Atom. When it would ship, if at all, wasn't apparent.
Open OS continues to evolve despite Nokia snub
Meego, the open source OS that Nokia shipped with its N9 smartphone, has had more details emerge regarding its upcoming 1.2 update. The major features of the update include is face recognition for the photo gallery, to better help find familiar people, and an improved UI for the camera. The new camera UI now separates the flash options, while video recording now has a separate icon to turn on the LED flash.
HP webOS deal may be held up on printer promise
A rumor emerging from HP's prospective sale of its webOS group has identified a new buyer as well as the possible reasons for HP's indecision on the subject. The VentureBeat tip claimed that Intel has just started discussing the prospect of a deal. Qualcomm, best known for its Snapdragon chips, was allegedly still in discussions in spite of public denials.
Nokia N9 unlocked on sale at Expansys
Nokia's N9 has been given an indirect route to the US through listings at Expansys' American shop. The phone is available in every trim it has in Europe, including 16GB and 64GB models in black, cyan, and magenta. Every version is unlocked and will work on 3G for both AT&T and T-Mobile.
Browsers updated for variety of platforms
Opera has announced that its Mini and Mobile browsers have been updated on all platforms, including Android, iOS, S60, J2ME, BlackBerry, S60 and MeeGo. A data usage view is the primary new feature available on all devices, enabling users to take a quick look at how much data the browser has used and a comparison between the original page sizes and the savings due to Opera's compression technology.
Lumia 800 arrives in UK on November 16
The Nokia Lumia 800 has been confirmed to arrive in the UK market on November 16. The Windows Phone-powered device is a near-clone of the N9, which runs on MeeGo. The Lumia also arrives a day earlier than the Samsung Galaxy Nexus.
Nokia N9 sees 1.1 update and new color
Nokia gave the N9 a treat at Nokia World with a jump in software as well as a new color. The MeeGo phone's 1.1 update will give it several new features, including the ability to read NFC tags. It also catches up to the iPhone by adding music controls at the lock screen and improves the buttonless UI by letting users swipe apps down to close them.
Free app available for premium Spotify service
Spotify and Nokia have teamed up for a native Spotify app for the N9. The MeeGo app provides full access to Spotify's library of music tracks, playlist management, and an offline caching mode. As always, the app is free (Nokia Store), but it needs a $10 Spotify Premium subscription.
Nokia holds crowdsourcing contest for N9 UI
Nokia is holding a contest, asking interested parties to come up with ways to improve their flagship N9 smartphone. There are a total of 15 Nokia N9s earmarked as prizes, and users can submit their ideas on a dedicated website. The crowd-sourcing approach is expected to come up with an innovative and intuitive interface that the design team likely wouldn't stumble upon, one of the judges, Peter Skillman, VP of Services & MeeGo Design, believed.
Will help developers create NFC-based apps
Nokia has made available an update to its Qt SDK toolkit that will support the creation of NFC apps. The update will let developers to create these apps for both Symbian smartphones and the lone MeeGo phone, the N9. Nokia envisions the technology as having a broader range of use now that it's in the hand of third party apps.
Chip maker dropping support for MeeGo
Intel has announced that it has moved to acquire Telmap, an Israeli company that specializes in location-based products and services for mobile devices. The buyout is aimed at bolstering Intel's consumer services division, providing an additional incentive for developers to create content for the chip maker's AppUp application portal.
Tizen rises from ashes of MeeGo
Intel and Samsung partly confirmed rumors by unveiling Tizen. The effective successor to MeeGo still uses Linux as an open-source foundation for a mobile OS but is focused on a much broader coalition of LiMo supporters that includes Japanese phone makers NEC Casio and Panasonic Mobile, OS developer Access, and carriers NTT DoCoMo, SK Telecom, Telefonica (O2), and Vodafone. The group will focus more on HTML5- and Wholesale Applications Community-based apps that can run on MeeGo and can share much of their code for other platforms and devices.
Nokia N9 reaching stores in some countries
Nokia posted Tuesday that it had started shipping the N9. Its first MeeGo phone should be in stores in some countries, including Finland, much of Scandinavia, and parts of Europe. A version with 16GB of built-in storage costs 480 euros ($650) contract-free, and a 64GB version costs 560 euros ($759).
Gartner sees no Android, W8 threat to iPad soon
Gartner refreshed its estimates for tablet share in a view that further cemented Apple's lead. It now saw the iPad taking more share in 2011 than predicted just five months ago, up five points to 73.4 percent, or 46.7 million iPads. The analyst group lowered its expectations for Android at the same time and saw it getting just 17.3 percent, or 11 million tablets.
Ultrathin will carry a $227 price tag
Amazon is accepting pre-orders for ASUS' new Eee PC X101. The 10.1-inch ultrathin computer is one of the first notebooks to run the Windows-alternative MeeGo, Intel's Linux-based, open-source software platform. Amazon is showing a price of $227, but gives no indication when the netbook will actually begin shipping.
Samsung says MeeGo not truly an option
Samsung spokesman James Chung in a statement Friday ruled out the prospects of buying MeeGo. The representative didn't acknowledge that Samsung might just take control, but he argued that a financial deal was impossible. As open-source work, it "cannot be a target of acquisition," he told CNET.
Samsung may buy MeeGo according to leak
More uncertainty about MeeGo's fate has emerged at the start of the week as three separate sources maintained that Samsung was looking to take control of MeeGo. Intel had supposedly shifted much of its attention away, with Samsung looking to take the reins. The contacts for Netbook News didn't elaborate on when Samsung might make the leap.
Intel may freeze MeeGo in favor of Android, WP7
Intel may be putting a halt to work on MeeGo after getting little to no takeup from partners, industry rumors maintained late Thursday. With Nokia backing away outside of phones like the N9 and very few using MeeGo for tablets, Intel was reportedly looking to at least temporarily shut down work on its in-house OS for 2012. Instead, it would put its fledgling smartphone work into Android and, according to Digitimes, possibly Windows Phone.
Early implementation of Linux-based MeeGo OS
Lenovo's IdeaPad S100 has begun to show up on European shelves with MeeGo. This is the first netbook running the Linux-based, Intel- and Nokia-developed OS to be sold on the continent. It's not clear if Lenovo has plans to bring the variant on the netbook to the US.
Launch plans now murky
Despite the significant marketing efforts Nokia has put behind its MeeGo flagship handset, the N9, the company appears to be shrinking its launch plans to include fewer countries. After admitting that there is no intention to bring the N9 to the US or the UK, the company has told MobiFlip the device will not be heading to Germany, Austria or Switzerland.
Nokia N9 timed to arrive in 49 days
Nokia's Swedish N9 page has started a countdown that has given away the timing for the MeeGo phone. As of Thursday, the smartphone was due to arrive in about 49 days, or September 23. Claims had already been made by carriers for the late September date but, until now, hadn't been acknowledged by Nokia itself.
ASUS Eee PC X101 gets US pricing
New tips have narrowed down the US availability and pricing of ASUS' Eee PC X101. Both should be available this week and will have a wide price gap depending on the choice of OS. The more typical Windows 7-based X101H will cost $299, while Digitimes understands the MeeGo-running X101 will cost just $199.
Nokia Maps now works on web for iOS, Android
Nokia made a rare concession to challenging phone platforms Friday with a new mobile-aware version of Nokia Maps. An updated HTML5-based page gives Android and iOS users both a way to find their location as well as plot directions by car or on foot. It will find points of interest that include public transit routes, though it drops short of Google Maps without the option of routing based on those lines.
Inexpensive portable uses Linux variant
Samsung has unveiled a new portable netbook for the Indian market, NotebookItalia found. The 10.1-inch N100 weighs just under 2.3lbs and has a white DuraCase finish that is resistant to scratches and marks. Its 250GB hard drive is preloaded with the Linux-based MeeGo OS, an open-source project originally fostered by Intel and Nokia -- though other companies have since added to its development.
ASUS Eee PC X101H at FCC with Windows 7
The ASUS Eee PC X101, or more specifically, the X101H, has now shown up at the FCC. The listing reveals the company is testing at least Windows 7 and not, so far, the MeeGo version. The notebook's other specs should remain intact, however, including a 0.7-inch thickness and 950g (2.1lbs) weight.
Nokia RM-670 has AT&T, T-Mobile support
An upcoming Nokia handset, the RM-670, has shown up undergoing approval testing at the FCC. The device, which showed up previously as the 700 Zeta, the phone may soon arrive in the US for AT&T, T-Mobile, or both with support for both 1,700MHz AWS (T-Mobile and 850/1,900MHz (AT&T) 3G bands.
MeeGo-based phone will be around for a while
In June, Nokia launched the much anticipated MeeGo-based N9 smartphone. Shortly afterwards, Nokia CEO Stephen Elop enraged both Nokia and MeeGo fans by
revealing that there might not be more of the open OS based phones, as Nokia followed through on its commitment to consolidate its efforts instead around Microsoft's Windows Phone OS. Recently, Klas Ström, Nokia's Head of Portfolio Management tried to emphatically reassure N9 customers that the company was committed to providing long term support for the phone.
Nokia said exiting Japan with Vertu departure
Nokia's last footprint in the Japanese phone market will disappear by the end of August, local media said Friday [sub. required]. The company had already stopped direct carrier deals for phones in 2008, but Nikkei now understood Nokia would exit entirely. The withdrawal would include closing the stores for its upscale Vertu badge in Tokyo's Ginza and Shibuya districts.
Update shows continued support for Symbian OS
Without much fanfare, Nokia has updated its C5-00 smartphone. The Symbian-based phone, now branded the C5-00 5MP, sports a 5.0-megapixel EDoF (enhanced depth of field) camera, an upgrade from its earlier 3.2-megapixel version. Other enhancements include a boost from 50MB to 270MB of internal storage to help handle photo demands and a doubling of RAM to 256MB.
ASUS Eee PC X101 to hit in July with prices shown
ASUS' MacBook Air-inspired Eee PC X101 is now slated to get a quick launch but also possibly a processor switch, tips hinted at on Monday. The ultrathin netbook is now poised to arrive in July, just a month over it was shown. To get to the $199 price for the MeeGo version, though, Digitimes heard it was using a single-core 1.33GHz Atom N435 and not the previously mentioned dual-core 1.5GHz Atom N670.
Nokia N950 appears at FCC
Nokia's N950 developer phone has already surfaced in an FCC filing (note: link may not work) that shows it already close to being available in the US. The MeeGo phone, once thought to be the N9 and even showing the N9 name, has the familiar sliding, tilting QWERTY keyboard of numerous leaks. A look at the back has shown that it may be a partial upgrade over the actual N9 with a 12-megapixel autofocusing camera instead of the eight-megapixel model it normally uses.
CEO reemphasizes Windows Phone focus
This week, Nokia unveiled the N9 smartphone, the company's first smartphone to run the MeeGo OS. The Finnish Newspaper Helsingin Sanomat reports in an interview with Nokia's CEO Stephen Elop that it will also be the company's last. Nokia will be focusing all its efforts on the Windows Phone OS, no matter how successful the N9 might be.
Google's Eric Schmidt may have put Android on N9
Nokia may have experimented with Android on the Nokia N9 as an alternative to MeeGo, according to a source. Photos sent to Engadget appear to show an N9 running a stock Gingerbread install. The phone may have been part of Google chief Eric Schmidt's effort to convince Nokia CEO Stephen Elop to use Android as an alternative to MeeGo.
Nokia Windows Phone 'Sea Ray' looks like N9
Nokia in a Hungarian leak has shown its first Windows Phone 7 device. In a video presentation (below), CEO Stephen Elop showed a "super confidential" device codenamed Sea Ray. The design Technet.hu saw is nearly identical to the N9 and makes only a few changes, including WP7's dedicated camera button and a newly altered camera flash.
Buttonless touch screen phone runs MeeGo OS
Nokia has revealed a first ship date for its N9 smartphone. The N9, carried in Sweden by wireless service provider 3, will be available on September 23. The phone is the first to run the MeeGo OS, and not Windows Phone, which has been the focus of much of Nokia's recent development efforts.
Nokia N9 confirmed at last
Nokia at its Singapore event unveiled its most anticipated phone in years through the N9. The just-leaked design is the first MeeGo smartphone and centers on a rare, truly buttonless design: swipe gestures control switching apps from a pane-based interface and even include an iOS 5-style swipe to launch apps from individual notifications. The design goes so far as to omit a home button and is based on multi-touch at most every step, including in modern web and media browsers.
Nokia N9 press images arrive early
(Update: live photos) Nokia's imminent N9 may have been given its ultimate reveal early through a spoiler of the first press shots. True to earlier last-minute tips, the MeeGo phone would drop the keyboard previously seen. PocketNow's glimpse also showed an iPod nano-like rounded, very thin design dominated by a touchscreen and without any front-facing hardware buttons.
Nokia N9 may bow at Nokia Connection June 21
The Nokia N9 may get its formal reveal at the Nokia Connection event on Tuesday, sources hinted. Nokia had already confirmed there would be a new "masterpiece" product at the Singapore event, but Tinhte understood it would be the long-rumored MeeGo phone. The design would be "very thin" with no front-facing buttons but also, unusually, would drop the slider keyboard associated with the phone during its entire unofficial history.
Features Intel Atom processor, custom UI
At Computex 2011 today Acer showed the the Iconia Tab M500, the 10-inch Iconia Tab M500. The M500 is the first Meego-based tablet by a major manufacturer. Acer Vice President David Lee presented the tablet (see video below), which had a customized circular interface that makes extensive use of widgets. Lee called the interface "snackable," and is designed to keep important content easily accessible.