China Mobile developing Android-based OS to gain mobile Internet stronghold
Following the recent trend of “everybody wanting to create their own smartphone OS” syndrome (i.e. Apple’s mobile OS X, Google’s Android, Nokia’s open-source Symbian), China Mobile is said to be, guess what? Working on one of their own.
Rumor has it that China Mobile is developing an operating system for TD-SCDMA mobile phones, and that it will be based on the open-source Google Android platform. In Japan, NTT DoCoMo is doing something similar.
China Mobile’s OS is intended to run on a new device, called the Onephone. (No, not that 01.)
Inside sources claim that, “The system… will integrate some of [China Mobile's] own applications designed with the TD-SCDMA network in mind, and will be similar to the iPhone in concept.” Prototype handsets currently under development are called ‘Ophones’, and it is said that the hardware may be supplied by manufacturer Lenovo.
As to why China Mobile is doing this, sources say that the move can be seen as “an attempt to reassert and extend its dominance over the mobile internet industry chain, making it difficult for others to get a foothold on anything other than China Mobile’s terms in the future.”
It figures, knowing how big the Chinese mobile phone market is, after all.