A team of ex-Nokia employees has managed to raise $257.8 million to launch a “new” mobile operating platform based on MeeGo, an operating system jointly developed and recently abandoned by Intel and Nokia.
According to the Wall Street Journal, Jolla will debut a new smartphone next month that is based on the discarded OS – which the company has since renamed Sailfish.
Additional details about the refreshed OS aren’t being disclosed at this time, but Jolla is said to be working hard to ensure the operating system will ultimately be capable of functioning across a wide variety of devices, including smartphones, touch-screen tablets and televisions.
“There has been a lot of interest in what we’re doing and it has been a busy few months – [especially since] our platform will be able to function well on lower-end devices,” Jolla Chief Executive Jussi Hurmola told the Wall Street Journal.
”[Plus], much of the recent litigation between Apple and Android makers have touched upon user interface infringement. Our software is well patented and we haven’t copied anybody. That’s a big opportunity for device makers.”
Clearly, Jolla’s efforts should be commended, as OS variety in the mobile space is sorely lacking at the moment and essentially dominated by Apple’s iOS and Google’s Android. Obviously, Jolla will have an uphill battle in the US, but may fare better in emerging markets where mid-range handsets and hardware are much more common than high-end smartphones running Android or Apple’s iOS.
The OS may also find a home on platforms other than handsets, such as automotive infotainment, tablets and set-top boxes. Obviously, we’ll have to wait and see how Sailfish stacks up against Android, iOS and even Mozilla’s nascent Boot to Gecko Project.