Nokia's Mobile OS Symbian Goes Open Source
Symbian is free at last. The mobile operating platform for Nokia, the world's largest mobile device maker, is now available as an open source operating system. It's official. Nearly two years ago, Nokia spent $410 million to buy all of Symbian, the mobile operating system software in which it already owned a major stake -- and promised to turn it into a new, royalty-free mobile software platform.
Today, Nokia announced that the Symbian Foundation, an organization it created after the buyout, will release the software as open source under the Eclipse Pubic License. "We've spent a lot of time at the Foundation with partners to work things out, scrub the code, and we're very proud of it," Larry Berkin, head of global alliances for the Symbian Foundation and its general manager in the U.S., told InternetNews.com. Berkin also noted the open source release comes four months ahead of the Foundation's original estimate of June 2010. Good news of any kind is a plus for Nokia, which has seen a gaggle of smartphones (the Apple iPhone, the BlackBerry, and more recently, Android devices) gain a sales edge in the U.S. Still, Nokia remains a market leader in Europe and a leading provider of mobile devices globally. Since its release ten years ago, Symbian has shipped in over 330 million devices around the world.