Nokia, Intel create phone software partnership

Intel and Nokia announced that the two companies will combine their smartphone operating systems, with Nokia’s Linux based Maemo merging with Intel’s Moblin.

Intel and Nokia hope they’ll be able to compete with rivals by getting their software on as many new smartphones as possible.  The new MeeGo Linux-based OS is aimed at helping both companies compete with increased pressure from Google, Apple, RIM and other companies that are working on high-end smartphones.

Much to analysts dismay, Nokia keeps supporting Symbian even though consumers continue to lose interest in the OS.  The company has been working on a replacement OS for higher-end handsets and wants to draw new consumers to their phones, especially in North America.


The Nokia Maemo OS, which first made a debut three months ago, was the company’s major answer as it loses marketshare to other smartphone platforms.  Nokia relied on Symbian for too long, but has recently made adjustments while slashing phone prices.  The Finnish company hopes to ship 500 million phones in 2010.

The Finnish company still has 40% of the overall world-wide handset market, but it is loosing share.  I’m skeptical an Intel partnership will be able to significantly help Nokia in short-term sales, but it could be beneficial since this new joint venture will be spread across multiple platforms.

Look for Intel to try and capitalize on its agreement with Nokia by slipping some of its mobille chips into future Nokia phones.

If implemented, the Maemo/Moblin hybrid mobile OS could be used on netbooks, tablets, smartbooks, connected TVs and other platforms.  Devices using the new mobile platform will be released later in 2010, and the Intel AppUp Center and Nokia Ovi Store will both market the new products.