Verizon picks LiMo Linux instead of Android

Verizon Wireless has joined the Linux Mobile Foundation, a consortium that has big names like LG, NEC, Motorola, Samsung and NTT DoCoMo as it’s members and whose goal is to develop their own Linux-based mobile platform.

The first phones based on said platform should come out by the end of 2008. Verizon on the other hand should release their first LiMo handsets “well into 2009”.

You might have expected Verizon to go with Android, but surprisingly the company found Google’s mobile Linux platform not “open enough”.

Here’s an official quote from Verizon as published on TheRegister:

We chose LiMo because it’s a collaborative effort. It’s not just one company runs the place. We like that. We like a collegial and collaborative effort, where there is no barrier to entry on the part of developers and, at the end of the day, there is no one entity that can say ‘OK, here’s how we were playing now. The rules are changed.

LiMo will be our preferred OS because of this openness.

The LiMo platform supports native application development, offers Java SDK and allows building of HTML & JavaScript widgets. It might be true that it gives a bit more freedom for software developers than Android (which doesn’t support native libraries, at least not officially), but the real motive of Verizon might be getting a place in the LiMo board.

While it’s true that LiMo is now the Verizon’s “OS of choice”, the company official was very clear on the fact that it’s their intention to offer smartphones with many other OSes as well, letting the customers have a choice. That means Google’s Android still has a chance with the second largest wireless carrier in US.

What’s more, Verizon has promised their customers that they will allow attaching any device to their wireless network by the end of the year – as long as it meets certain requirements. Right now only handsets sold by Verizon can be used with the company’s network. Could it be that Verizon is looking to get out of the phone selling business and leave it to the phone producers to deal with support?

Via: ArsTechnica, TheRegister

Author: Andrius

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