Beta

Slashdot: News for Nerds

×

Welcome to the Slashdot Beta site -- learn more here. Use the link in the footer or click here to return to the Classic version of Slashdot.

Thank you!

Before you choose to head back to the Classic look of the site, we'd appreciate it if you share your thoughts on the Beta; your feedback is what drives our ongoing development.

Beta is different and we value you taking the time to try it out. Please take a look at the changes we've made in Beta and  learn more about it. Thanks for reading, and for making the site better!

Nokia Preps Linux OS For Low-End Smartphones

Soulskill posted more than 2 years ago | from the eggs-in-different-baskets dept.

Cellphones 199

itwbennett writes "Nokia is going after the low-end smartphone market with a Linux-based OS code-named 'Meltemi.' The phones are expected to cost under $100 without subsidies. A Nokia spokesman's no-comment comment went like this: 'Of course, we don't comment on future products or technologies. However, I can say that our Mobile Phones team has a number of exciting projects in the works that will help connect the next billion consumers to the Internet.'"

cancel ×

199 comments

Now there's a threesome /. doesn't see every day (2, Interesting)

tech4 (2467692) | more than 2 years ago | (#37578224)

This means the three friends Linux-Nokia-Microsoft will be in bed together. It's not surprising considering Nokia already developed Qt and they were developing MeeGo which is based on Linux. Their Nokia N9 [nokia.com] phone is quite awesome, actually.

Now what's great about this is the fact that with Nokia's history they have proven to put out quality hardware. They can also really use this to fight against both iPhone and what's worrisome for some, Android. Android has lots of fragmentation and patent related problems. Just yesterday it was revealed that Microsoft alone gets $400 million a day from Android.

Re:Now there's a threesome /. doesn't see every da (1)

mhh91 (1784516) | more than 2 years ago | (#37578264)

Sony Ericsson is known to put out quality hardware, Nokia is known for just putting out.

Re:Now there's a threesome /. doesn't see every da (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#37578362)

Ridiculous. Nokia makes the best hardware out there. Their problem is being horribly late with software, due to terrible management.

Re:Now there's a threesome /. doesn't see every da (1)

md65536 (670240) | more than 2 years ago | (#37578624)

Ridiculous. Nokia makes the best hardware out there. Their problem is being horribly late with software, due to terrible management.

This gives them an excuse to implement my conspiracy theory:
- Nokia will have MS doing the work of "customizing" Linux for the phones. MS will brand it in a way that it both cashes in on the Linux name, and also tries to sound like "It's our own work that makes it good."
- MS will keep building up ways to make money off Linux. They'll spin two ways; they'll claim that their work exploiting^H^H^H^H extending Linux legitimizes their right to claim license fees for the rest of it, and they'll slowly solidify their position of "ownership" due to some bullshit patents they have.

Re:Now there's a threesome /. doesn't see every da (2, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#37578666)

Having worked at Microsoft, there's no way I think this will happen in the next few years.

Microsoft has a very strong culture of "not invented here", and is completely paranoid about open source contaminating their products. Any involvement with open source (and in particular, GPL software) requires a monstrous amount of paperwork and negotiation, and will be shot down in nearly all cases. Since Microsoft already has their phone OS, they will not use Linux.

Re:Now there's a threesome /. doesn't see every da (2, Insightful)

tech4 (2467692) | more than 2 years ago | (#37578700)

- MS will keep building up ways to make money off Linux. They'll spin two ways; they'll claim that their work exploiting^H^H^H^H extending Linux legitimizes their right to claim license fees for the rest of it, and they'll slowly solidify their position of "ownership" due to some bullshit patents they have.

So wait, Red Hat, Canonical, Google and other companies are all warmly welcome to contribute and make improvements, but when it's Microsoft we should go "noo, we don't play with guys like that. go away."

They're all profiting (or as you say, exploiting) Linux just the way you describe.

Re:Now there's a threesome /. doesn't see every da (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#37579064)

Exactly. Fuck Microsoft!

Re:Now there's a threesome /. doesn't see every da (2)

hot soldering iron (800102) | more than 2 years ago | (#37579550)

Very true about others "exploiting" Linux, except for a major difference: They all play by the Open Source License rules. You make a change to FOSS code, AND RE-RELEASE THE PROGRAM, you must provide the source code when requested. That requirement totally negates MS's number one, and historically proven, business strategy: embrace, extend, extinguish. If they embrace and extend, they have to let it out into the wild. They can't extinguish it. That's why they have always treated FOSS like the Gods Damned Plague. Their normal method of operations is totally disarmed.

Maybe their CEO and board have remembered that the number one purpose of a company is to make money. Period. Google, Red Hat, Novell, IBM, Oracle, and Canonical, either have or are currently making money off Linux. If MS wants some of that market, they'll have to spin off a division that ONLY does FOSS. They can't afford to contaminate any of their other projects^H^H^H^Hducts with FOSS code. There have been rumors that they have used FOSS code, but since they only give out binaries, it's hard to prove.

I would love to have MS come play with Linux. As long as they follow the rules and play in good faith. (Historically, not a chance in Hell. Even their own head Open Source Evangelist quit in disgust after a year.) MS has some extreme skills in UI design, developer tool building, and marketing.

Re:Now there's a threesome /. doesn't see every da (1)

tech4 (2467692) | more than 2 years ago | (#37579926)

They all play by the Open Source License rules. You make a change to FOSS code, AND RE-RELEASE THE PROGRAM, you must provide the source code when requested.

Like Google with Android?

Re:Now there's a threesome /. doesn't see every da (0)

md65536 (670240) | more than 2 years ago | (#37579682)

So wait, Red Hat, Canonical, Google and other companies are all warmly welcome to contribute and make improvements, but when it's Microsoft we should go "noo, we don't play with guys like that. go away."

I didn't say any of that, but yes... that's a good idea you have. We should tell MS to go away.

There are companies that are good for FOSS and for users, and companies that are bad. Google and Red Hat have been beneficial for Linux. At the very least, I've never read any stories about either of them charging licensing fees to use other variations of Linux, the way MS is doing with Android.

I think that anyone who doesn't think MS is bad must have assholes so stretched out that they don't feel it anymore.

Re:Now there's a threesome /. doesn't see every da (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#37578912)

My nokia is 7+ years old. It's still going, with the only problem being it has a memory leak that hurts it once every 3-4 weeks.

Re:Now there's a threesome /. doesn't see every da (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#37579412)

Sony Ericsson quality hardware? You've got to be kidding me. Nokia's hardware at its best puts every manufacturer to shame.

Re:Now there's a threesome /. doesn't see every da (1, Funny)

tech4 (2467692) | more than 2 years ago | (#37578284)

Just a slight correction, $400 million an year of course. And so this isn't just self-reply... Nokia has always needed help with their UI and consumer friendly part in their smartphones. I think Windows 7 is a really good choice for that, as it's actually a really user friendly OS and it already as the marketplace and other stuff ready that Nokia never got off alone. But Nokia has also done good low-end phones and they're still selling really great in Asia and in Europe too. Linux is a good choice for those, as it can run on more low-end machine and Nokia already has knowledge about it gained from MeeGo.

Re:Now there's a threesome /. doesn't see every da (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#37579014)

Correction to the last comment: meego, maemo and osso. In product names n770, n800,n810, n900 and last n9.. While all of them are not phones, all of them run linux

Re:Now there's a threesome /. doesn't see every da (4, Interesting)

fuzzyfuzzyfungus (1223518) | more than 2 years ago | (#37578446)

What I don't understand about this plan(assuming it isn't mere rumor) is that the linux-based OS is supposed to be for cheap, low-spec phones that their new MS/Nokia BFF WP7 deal doesn't provide them with an OS suitable for...

Their MeeGo/QT work, now orphaned, was largely aimed at higher end smartphones, the same ones that are now going to be WP7 devices. None of the linux-with-custom-stuff-on-top phone OSes(MeeGo, Android, WebOS) work particularly well on sub-smartphone hardware. They are powerful, have some nice features, and don't suffer from some of the horrid, idiosyncratic development environments of the old dumbphone and featurephone OSes; but they don't actually scale down very far before you are looking at some seriously dire performance, RAM so limited that multitasking is largely a theoretical benefit, and a screen so lousy that your decent browser is nearly useless for anything that isn't a deeply spartan 'mobile' website that a 1997 WAP phone could have rendered....

That's what I don't understand: Linux-based systems definitely have their points on more powerful hardware, and Nokia has access to one of their own(in addition to doing an adroid hostile-fork, as Amazon did); but they aren't so hot on weaker hardware(Exercise: grab a copy of the debian m68k port and replicate the features of, say, a Palm III, in 2MB of ROM, 2MB of RAM, and a 16MHz processor....). Nokia also has a number of eccentric and crufty; but eminently suited to very-low-spec phones OSes available. Why would they possibly be spinning Yet Another Linux WIth Something Weird On Top Of It OS?

Re:Now there's a threesome /. doesn't see every da (1)

peppepz (1311345) | more than 2 years ago | (#37578518)

To run Qt on it.

Re:Now there's a threesome /. doesn't see every da (2)

tech4 (2467692) | more than 2 years ago | (#37578532)

I think you're under assuming recent generation low-end phones. They're perfectly capable of multitasking, surfing the internet, many even have cameras. They might not have so many features, the camera quality isn't really that good, but even the cheap phones now a day can do lots of stuffs. And I actually just looked from Nokia's site. Since hardware is the most cost, I think they can do it with their Linux solution since now they're using Symbian.

Re:Now there's a threesome /. doesn't see every da (4, Informative)

Imbrondir (2367812) | more than 2 years ago | (#37578646)

Cheap low end hardware has changed since the Palm III

They are probably thinking about an 600-800MHz ARM9/11 cpu with 128-256MB of RAM, with a GPU that can still draw 30 million triangles per second and play 1080p videos (like say the 25$ raspberry pi coming out this november). Also Nokia is moving upcoming Qt 5 rendering to run almost entirely on OpenGL (ES). This will probably make the UI on such devices (GPU with a cpu tacked on) smoother than on a high end Android 2.x phone.

Then again, they could just as well do this on existing Symbian devices.

Re:Now there's a threesome /. doesn't see every da (2)

Microlith (54737) | more than 2 years ago | (#37578754)

Within a few months, Cortex-A8 based processors are going to be low end.

they could just as well do this on existing Symbian devices.

It is cheaper to utilize components that are getting outside development than ones requiring you do all the work internally. That's why they merged Maemo into MeeGo (long term planning, really) and why they seem to be transitioning the low end to Linux.

Only question is if they'll drag Aegis over to the low end and cripple the systems even more severely than iOS and Android.

Re:Now there's a threesome /. doesn't see every da (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#37579532)

Mentioning Nokias linux strategy and the words "long term planning" in the same sentence does not make much sense. These people are unable to keep to the same strategy for 6 months at a time... and that has been going on for about 4-5 years now.

Re:Now there's a threesome /. doesn't see every da (1)

Tomato42 (2416694) | more than 2 years ago | (#37578760)

I'd like to point out that those are better specs than the N900 has...

Re:Now there's a threesome /. doesn't see every da (2)

Microlith (54737) | more than 2 years ago | (#37578854)

The N900 has a 600MHz Cortex-A8 based processor and 256MB of RAM. The GPU in the processor on the Raspberry Pi is an ARM11 (ARMv6) core, which while decent (same as the early Android devices and first two iPhones) it's behind the N900.

Re:Now there's a threesome /. doesn't see every da (1)

dog77 (1005249) | more than 2 years ago | (#37578890)

Maybe it will use the Cortex-A5, more efficient and faster than Arm11, but supposedly lower cost than Cortex-A8. There were rumors that it would finally show the light of day in 2011/2012. http://www.pcmag.com/article2/0,2817,2380443,00.asp [pcmag.com]

Re:Now there's a threesome /. doesn't see every da (4, Interesting)

Flambergius (55153) | more than 2 years ago | (#37578814)

It's probably more than just a rumour, at least that's the impression I got from the Finnish media, which tends to be fairly well informed. Meaning that the OS exist and there are products planned, but of course no guarantees that a product will ship.

As to how the Meltemi-stuff make any sense:

At the level that Nokia makes decisions, the smartphone segment of mobile business isn't about hardware anymore, it's applications and services, or probably more to the point, it's about attracting developers. Nokia ditched their own OSes because they knew that by themselves they could not attract enough developers to build a fourth "ecosystem" (iOS, Android and WP being the there current ones). Nokia said that they chose between Android and WP, and, while we can speculate why they chose WP, one of the stated reasons was the fully-fledged and mature tool-chain that WP has.

Meltemi itself may be about many things: hedging their bets, getting something out of the Linux experience they have, or maybe they just feel that the segment suits a Linux-based OS. The next generation of sub-$100 phones will be much more powerful then previous ones and it would be misleading to think them as having very low specs, but it will still be a distinct segment, separate from the smartphone segment, especially it will not be driven by third-party applications and services. That means that Nokia can still, by themselves, make a competitive phone to that segemnt without having to build an ecosystem.

In summary, Nokia ditched Linux (MeeGo) on smartphones because they had to, and they are using Linux (Meltemi) on feature phones because they can.

It could be an escape route (4, Insightful)

Colin Smith (2679) | more than 2 years ago | (#37579338)

Microsoft doesn't have a good history of playing nice with partners. They tend to die painful deaths and their history in the mobile space is that of spectacular failure.

Scaling Linux from Meltemi up from a low spec to a high spec smartphone would be relatively easy. If the MS "partnership" goes the way all the previous ones have gone, Nokia would be dead, full stop. This way they may have an escape route.

Oh and "feature phone" these days is 100MHz with 32Mb RAM, 2Gb storage. That sounds like a 30 user system to me.

Re:Now there's a threesome /. doesn't see every da (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#37578486)

nokia did not develope Qt but it bought trolltech, what still develops it.

And nokia hardware quality hype is so so. some phones nice and good but most nothing special in real life than in paper as listed.

And Nokia never toke MeeGo. They continued to develope a maemo (father of meego) and renamed maemo 6.0 as harmattan and even officially as MeeGo/Harmattan and only to get away from intel deal to deliver single MeeGo device. Harmattan isn't compatible with MeeGo and it does not matter as Nokia killed MeeGo. Nokia wanted to keep MeeGo development on itself and under control. so it got it under radar and under tight leech so it wouldn't evolve better than others.

Even in Finland the Nokia brand has been bad among repair companies. when comparing nokia to other brands with same amount of phones, nokia phones has got broken more often. Even the E7 phones what over 200 were bought to politicians over 50 has got broken under few months. so about 1/4 were terrible by quality.

Nokia does not get anything good from software part and even Jorma Ollila said few months ago that in finland there aint enough skilled people to code own operating system. thats why symbian sucked balls.

Even that Linux is originally finnish operating system, it survived because it is licensed with GPLv2 and even Linus has said it was best thing he ever made. And I agree. Not even GNU has got their own OS called HURD working after 26 years.

today no one starts new OS as there are no skills or time or money. Corporations use existing ones like Google toke Linux for android and chromeOS, Apple toke XNU from OS X for iOS too and microsoft toke CE to windows phone 7 from windows mobile and windows embedded.
So now MS has CE and NT operating systems to maintain and it knows as well it hass no time, money or skilled people to start new OS for markets. (it has research OS's on what it research multikernel os or pure C# OS)

Linux would have been savior for Nokia but they did not see the power and quality in Open Source community as they can not control the software development as now.

WTF??! (2, Insightful)

Jay Maynard (54798) | more than 2 years ago | (#37578316)

Is there any level on which this decision makes sense in light of Nokia's direction?

Any phone smart enough to run Linux us smart enough to run WP7.

And Nokia? Embracing Linux? After jettisoning MeeGo?

And Stephen Elop? Linux?! HUH?!

Consistency? What's that?

Does Nokia have any strategic direction at all?!

Re:WTF??! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#37578382)

Yes, Nokia lacks all direction, but this might be a good move for them.

WP7 was still-born. Maybe Nokia even with a borg CEO realizes that all eggs in the basket of a basket-case isn't the best idea.

While I would prefer a gnu userspace on my phone, a better strategy for Nokia would probably be to crank out commodity Android phones.

Re:WTF??! (1)

tech4 (2467692) | more than 2 years ago | (#37578456)

You know, Microsoft hasn't been with war with Open Source or Linux for years. They contribute to open source themselves, they ask for slashdotters opinion [slashdot.org] to their open source Python IDE (where 95% of you acted like dicks btw) and is in every other way come forward. The rest of the world has let it go years ago. Maybe you should too.

Re:WTF??! (2)

DarwinSurvivor (1752106) | more than 2 years ago | (#37578488)

So they are finally embracing linux. I wonder when they'll get around to steps 2 and 3.

Re:WTF??! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#37578678)

Symbian, QT and KDE would like to have a word with you

Re:WTF??! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#37579238)

.. the earlier were made by nokia, the last was a community project. Idiot.

Re:WTF??! (1)

That Guy From Mrktng (2274712) | more than 2 years ago | (#37578866)

So they can go from 90% to 91% of market share? As if killing Linux would benefit the pockets for someone on MS. Get real, tech4 is righ MS is mostly meh about open source. Linux it's so good that this kind of patent "low self esteem" from the users is unwarranted and, in fact, harming Linux.

Nobody want to befriend that lone nutjob on the corner shouting to "the man" while theres no one else in the street.

Re:WTF??! (1)

Tomato42 (2416694) | more than 2 years ago | (#37578548)

Fellow slahdotters, we've got a real slider on our hands...

Re:WTF??! (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#37578592)

Right, which is why we have all the FUD with patents?

Re:WTF??! (1)

tech4 (2467692) | more than 2 years ago | (#37578738)

Linux-friendly and developing companies defend their patents too.

Re:WTF??! (1)

Microlith (54737) | more than 2 years ago | (#37578860)

Really? Like who?

Re:WTF??! (1)

ColdWetDog (752185) | more than 2 years ago | (#37579780)

Apple, of course.

Nice one (1)

WiiVault (1039946) | more than 2 years ago | (#37579144)

You must be joking. What would you call the patent shakedown of Android vendors then? Ya know, the scam that looks to net MS more than their own mobile platform will next year? Oh yeah MS has really changed... tactics- and that's about it.

Re:WTF??! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#37579406)

> Maybe you should too.

He and me.

Count 1+ not believing in this BS you wrote.

You cannot trust M$ PERIOD

You cannot trust M$ even if you work at M$!

Fool those idiot sheepish M$ users, not us linux users. And the only cake I care for was in BG's face a while ago...

Re:WTF??! (4, Insightful)

multi io (640409) | more than 2 years ago | (#37578458)

Is there any level on which this decision makes sense in light of Nokia's direction?

Looks like different factions within Nokia competing/fighting against each other.

Re:WTF??! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#37578490)

PROTIP: A big company is more than one person. And that most people at Nokia are actively revolting against the trojan horse that is Elop, is well-known.

You can bet that they will yuck him out in any way they can.
If it means sneaking in this way, then letting Elop fall flat on his face with the failing "high-end" WP7 division, to overtake him... that that's what it will be. :)

Re:WTF??! (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#37578560)

Take it as a preparation for reduced MS partnership as NOKIA realized that the recent R&D deal between MS and Samsung screwed NOKIA over. Why do you think this appeared in the news at the same time when Samsung stroke a patent/WP R&D deal with MS and Intel dropped MeeGo and joined Samsung?

Re:WTF??! (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#37578652)

The first time I read the announcement it made me suspect that their intention was to associate linux with cheap phones which are limited, buggy and virtually useless, and then shove a windows variant as the medium/high end. It would be like furniture shops intentionally making the cheaper furniture look ugly while the non-ugly versions are prohibitively expensive.

Re:WTF??! (1)

scuba0 (950343) | more than 2 years ago | (#37579712)

If they are lucky it will turn out like the Swedish brand IKEA. Cheap furniture and stuff which is perfectly adequate for anyone. When they open there doors in new towns, more expensive ones closes their doors. But I doubt Nokia is that smart...

You pretty much hit the nail on the head. (2)

Colin Smith (2679) | more than 2 years ago | (#37578672)

Though this isn't true:

Any phone smart enough to run Linux us smart enough to run WP7.

You can strip Linux down to sweet fuck all. Windows OTOH isn't Windows unless it has windows.

But yeah... WTF?

Re:You pretty much hit the nail on the head. (1)

That Guy From Mrktng (2274712) | more than 2 years ago | (#37578880)

Windows OTOH isn't Windows unless it has windows.

Zen moment

If a windows closes and theres nobody to see it, does it make a rootkit?

Re:WTF??! (2)

Hentes (2461350) | more than 2 years ago | (#37578826)

Any phone smart enough to run Linux us smart enough to run WP7.

Not true. Lots of embedded devices use Linux, it can have a very small footprint.

Re:WTF??! (1)

cyberbeatnik (187184) | more than 2 years ago | (#37579128)

Nokia's direction?? Elop went in saying he wanted to lead the company through a "disruption". I think you are suffering from the ant's perspective of the elephant here. Elop is not a hard core softie and has worked across the tech industry.

Having a lower cost OS for feature phones is smart, because no matter how close Elop is to msft Nokia still has to pay licensing fees for WP7.

Re:WTF??! (2)

TeknoHog (164938) | more than 2 years ago | (#37579142)

And Stephen Elop? Linux?! HUH?!

Apparently, Linux is only good for the dumbphones, while the smart ones run Windows. Makes sense from a general Microsoftie point of view.

Re:WTF??! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#37579190)

It's crazy. Only outcome from this news is associating “Linux” with “low end”. Which may be exactly what MS-Nokia wants.

Re:WTF??! (4, Informative)

EvilNTUser (573674) | more than 2 years ago | (#37579198)

According to rumors I've heard, this isn't Linux as we know it. They're going to run Qt as close to the hardware as possible with everything else stripped away. And we'd better hope it works, because it's the last chance we have of a Desktop Linux-compatible toolkit getting significant phone market share. I don't want to develop in Java, goddamnit.

Re:WTF??! (0)

devent (1627873) | more than 2 years ago | (#37579368)

"I don't want to develop in Java, goddamnit."

Can I ask why not? Java is a pretty good language, the tools are all free, it have lots and lots free open source libraries, and it runs pretty sweet on millions of Android phones.

The only down site is JavaME, so it would be good to chose Android, the DalvikVM, Harmony, or OpenJDK. Nokia is big enough to make patent deals with Oracle, but if I were a shop in every other country but the USA, I would chose one of the 4 for my smartphone.

Re:WTF??! (1)

AftanGustur (7715) | more than 2 years ago | (#37579390)

Is there any level on which this decision makes sense in light of Nokia's direction?

Any phone smart enough to run Linux us smart enough to run WP7.

And Nokia? Embracing Linux? After jettisoning MeeGo?

And Stephen Elop? Linux?! HUH?!

Consistency? What's that?

Does Nokia have any strategic direction at all?!

My guess is mass engineer dissapointment with corporate decisions or some other internal war burning in Nokia.

Re:WTF??! (0)

jbengt (874751) | more than 2 years ago | (#37579474)

Is there any level on which this decision makes sense in light of Nokia's direction?

Probably the level at which the small cost of an MS Windows license doesn't make sense on a sub-$100 phone.

Re:WTF??! (1)

stephanruby (542433) | more than 2 years ago | (#37579520)

Any phone smart enough to run Linux us smart enough to run WP7.

Yes, but they were probably talking about embedded Linux, not what you currently think of when you think of the Linux stack, or even the x86 Linux kernel.

And in that sense, no, embedded Linux can have a much smaller footprint than WP7. Have you even seen the minimum requirements [gsmarena.com] for WP7? They're not super high by today's standards, but they're not super low either. I think Microsoft even stated it as a benefit that they were not going to start their phone with low end hardware.

Re:WTF??! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#37579698)

Next up, they'll hire on Apotheker as Elop's whipping boy.

Re:WTF??! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#37579758)

Does Nokia have any strategic direction at all?!

Bust the company so the patent portfolio can be sold.

It's just a variation on the old 'borrow money, buy company, break up & sell assets for a little more than borrowed.'

First they ignore you... (-1, Troll)

Tomato42 (2416694) | more than 2 years ago | (#37578360)

Microsoft tries to ridicule Linux: "It's just a cheap-phone OS". Wasn't MS already at the "fight"-stage?

In other news Nokia will keep on making decent phones that just keep on working. (Americans need not to share their opinions, your cellphone systems are just like NTSC)

Re:First they ignore you... (2)

hydrofix (1253498) | more than 2 years ago | (#37578402)

I think this might be a positive development. Show them how your $100 Linux "dumbphone" can actually do twice as much as the $499 Windows "smartphone", twice as fast.

There won't be Web 2.0 on a $100 phone, but I guess you can write quite nice integrated solutions if you know a bit of UNIX and C.

Re:First they ignore you... (2)

Tomato42 (2416694) | more than 2 years ago | (#37578484)

It's definitely positive, if only they will go and make such phones.

Just having top and powertop on my N900 allows me to identify battery-draining apps in minutes, unlike my friend with Android that wasted a week to do this. You don't have to write them in C. I'm sure python will be ported... QT is C++ only.

Re:First they ignore you... (4, Interesting)

hankwang (413283) | more than 2 years ago | (#37579022)

Just having top and powertop on my N900 allows me to identify battery-draining apps in minutes, unlike my friend with Android

The Android Market has a Terminal Emulator app which will give you a command prompt that will let you run (a bare-bones version of) top, which is already part of the Android OS. Or you get PowerTutor from the Market for a more fancy graphical user interface. Or you go to Settings/About Phone/Battery/Battery Use.

Re:First they ignore you... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#37579886)

With QtScript and QML and WebKit and PySide, Qt is far from C++ only.

Re:First they ignore you... (0)

somersault (912633) | more than 2 years ago | (#37578412)

Maybe MS plan on making these phones really shitty to hurt Linux's image (considering Android is helping to boost it).

Re:First they ignore you... (1)

Tomato42 (2416694) | more than 2 years ago | (#37578536)

That's what probably went though some PHB (or Elop's, or Steve's) head. Either way, I'd say it's playing with fire.

Re:First they ignore you... (1)

hydrofix (1253498) | more than 2 years ago | (#37578564)

So you think Microsoft can dictate what kind of software and hardware Nokia manufacturers in projects unrelated to their WP7 deal?

Remember that Nokia is still an independent company with its own board, shareholders and goals, not a subsidiary of Microsoft.

Re:First they ignore you... (3, Insightful)

Microlith (54737) | more than 2 years ago | (#37578632)

I believe that Microsoft can do whatever they want with Nokia.

The board chose a CEO who did nothing visible, then forced Nokia into dependence on Microsoft. The shareholders reacted by selling madly. I don't know what Nokia's goals are aside from selling phones, but they don't seem to be reacting fast enough (especially with Elop pulling a multi-Osborne at the start of the year.)

So yeah, I expect that if MS tells Nokia to marginalize or kill something off, they'll try as hard as they can to do so. Elop has to stay on good terms with them or he'll ride Nokia into the gutter.

Re:First they ignore you... (1)

hydrofix (1253498) | more than 2 years ago | (#37578692)

Lot's of tech fantasy, zero fact. No company could ever legally negotiate the deal you described above. Please, take off your tinfoil hat and get real.

Meanwhile, outside the reality distortion field: Bloomberg Businessweek: Microsoft Is Said to Pay Nokia More Than $1 Billion in Deal [businessweek.com] (emphasis on which way the money is flowing)

Re:First they ignore you... (4, Insightful)

Microlith (54737) | more than 2 years ago | (#37578734)

No company could ever legally negotiate the deal you described above

Indeed, it is best left unspoken lest regulators have evidence later on.

take off your tinfoil hat and get real.

Yet Nokia, a company with some management issues, gets an ex-Microsoft CEO and suddenly burns down everything they had invested in, in exchange for a dependency on a company known to destroy "partners."

$1 Billion

A CEO and pocket change compared to what it would cost to actually buy Nokia.

The utter insanity of decisions coming out of that company now just suggest to me that there's a ton of politics, back and forth, and infighting, and that there's no unified leadership in the company. After all, suddenly this when Elop showed slides basically saying "within a few years anything not Microsoft will be gone."

Re:First they ignore you... (1)

tech4 (2467692) | more than 2 years ago | (#37578758)

Their CEO did nothing visible? Things take time you know. And what's the line about shareholders. Usually in Slashdot people hate companies because they only do something that pleasures their shareholders. Now you're crying that they made a decision that didn't.

Re:First they ignore you... (1)

Microlith (54737) | more than 2 years ago | (#37578878)

Usually in Slashdot people hate companies because they only do something that pleasures their shareholders.

Speaking as a shareholder, I hate it when companies do something stupid shortsighted to please traders who are come-today-gone-tomorrow. To have a drop as severe as they did earlier this year, long term investors had to have been annoyed and dumped their stock.

previus agreement (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#37578398)

if nokia and M$ already have an agreement, perhaps using linux isn't as costly for them as for others manufacturers. sadly, nokia is becoming the phone manufacturer arm of M$, bringing their logic to the bussines: winPho for the high-en, linux for the low-end. if the're lucky they can keep symbian, in the mid range.

Re:previus agreement (1)

tech4 (2467692) | more than 2 years ago | (#37578472)

Uh no, they should really drop Symbian already. It's just pain in the ass. Both to use and develop for. Best would be to only have Win7 for high-end phones and Linux for the low-end.

In related news ..... (1)

PPH (736903) | more than 2 years ago | (#37578450)

.... Nokia elopes with best man, Linux. Leaves Microsoft at the altar.

Sounds like an episode of Jerry Springer's show.

Flood market with unlocked cheapo wifi perhaps? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#37578544)

Good strategy for Nokia.....And what happens is a shift away from Android. Guess what they could do it. Bring it on. If the phones are open and not carrier driven lookout it will change the landscape. Which is a good thing. Perhaps they realise that the phone 7 adventure was a bust. They are definitely not selling. It would not be a bad thing to sink the carrier centred model as it is the only reason why and overpriced Androids and Iphones exist! Give the consumer an option that does not cost 500 dollars for something that should not be more than 100 and they will jump.

Carriers would still have to acquiesce (1)

tepples (727027) | more than 2 years ago | (#37578600)

Anonymous Coward wrote:

It would not be a bad thing to sink the carrier centred model

I agree. But for that to happen in the real world, the carriers would first have to be willing to allow phones designed for a non-carrier-centered model onto their respective networks. Right now, the United States market is split between two cellular technologies: GSM and CDMA2000. There are four nationwide carriers, soon to be three: Verizon Wireless (CDMA2000), Sprint (CDMA2000), AT&T (GSM), and a smaller GSM carrier that AT&T will soon acquire. Of these, only the GSM carriers consistently store the subscriber identity on a separate removable chip (the "SIM card"). CDMA2000 also allows for this (the "CSIM card"), but both CDMA2000 carriers have been seen to shun this in favor of programming the subscriber identity directly into the phones that they sell, and I haven't seen any indication that a carrier will activate a phone that it did not sell. So this leaves AT&T, and I've read stories on various tech forums of AT&T having a noticeably worse customer experience than the CDMA2000 carriers.

Re:Carriers would still have to acquiesce (3, Informative)

That Guy From Mrktng (2274712) | more than 2 years ago | (#37578954)

USA is hardly the 8% of the total mobile phone market.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_countries_by_number_of_mobile_phones_in_use [wikipedia.org]

And thats data from the CIA WFB 2007, guess numbers are even higher nowadays. My bet is that mobile manufacturers create products for the sane-mobile-rest-of-the-world-market first, and then they devote some time to pamper the American mobile industry.

Maybe they are Command Line Interface only? (2)

billrp (1530055) | more than 2 years ago | (#37578554)

For less than $100 you can't expect too much, but maybe xterm?

Re:Maybe they are Command Line Interface only? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#37578636)

For less than $100 you can't expect too much, but maybe xterm?

CLI-only surely mixes with xterm ... any idea why there's a 'x' in 'xterm' ...?

Re:Maybe they are Command Line Interface only? (1)

MrHanky (141717) | more than 2 years ago | (#37578716)

To make it sound cool?

Re:Maybe they are Command Line Interface only? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#37578654)

lg has a phone out that has sold at around the $100 mark on constant 'sales' around here, the lg optimus one. I have one (two actually, but ones a spare) and I put cyanogenmod 7 on it, and its pretty awesome. Not a $500 superbeast, but it browses the internet, gps, does google maps and streetview, games, etc, can buy off the android market, and anything else you can imagine doing on an android phone.

The tradeoff is the screen is not super high end, the processor not quite as fast, and the touchscreen is ok and not 'amazing'.

But it was only $100, new and not subsidized.

Good $100 phones are doable.

Re:Maybe they are Command Line Interface only? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#37578698)

to call use call command. to send sms or mms use sms command. to browse call and message history use a history command. to browse web use a www command. to view address book use a book command.

$ call /
$ sms /
$ www slashdot.org
$ history
$ book
$ camera
  etc

Re:Maybe they are Command Line Interface only? (1)

zlogic (892404) | more than 2 years ago | (#37578958)

Windows Phone 7 is kinda text-based.
Nokia could use a command-line interface with cloud-based voice recognition and create a really cheap phone - no keyboard, no touchscree, plus bonuses from AT&T for making people pay for traffic even when they're not actively using the internet.

Re:Maybe they are Command Line Interface only? (1)

That Guy From Mrktng (2274712) | more than 2 years ago | (#37578962)

For less than $100 you can't expect too much, but maybe xterm?

Just put EMACS and let the users sort the text editor in "the cloud"

I don't beleive it (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#37578556)

I don't buy it. I suspect that the real story is that Qt is being ported S40. Somebody tried to leak that and somehow messed up the story.

I'd like it to be true, of course, but it would be too weird, even for Nokia. You don't drive away your Linux developers and ecosystem, and then come out with another LInux based device a few months later. At least not until your Windows phones have failed.

(If this story were coming in February 2012, after the catastrophic failure of the Windows phones, then I would believe it.)

Patents (1)

olivebridge (1122781) | more than 2 years ago | (#37578618)

it would be quite funny if Microsoft were somehow forced to sue Nokia for patent infringement.

Incredibly dumb. (0)

Lumpy (12016) | more than 2 years ago | (#37578668)

Why fragment further. they could easily make earlier android version work on "low end" smartphones. Hell phones running android from 3 years ago are low end.

further proof that Nokia has jumped the shark.

Re:Incredibly dumb. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#37578732)

They havea team with years of experience in Maemo (N800/N900)/Harmattan (N9) so they have a solid foundation to work on. If they throwed that away and began from zero then that would be dumb

Re:Incredibly dumb. (2)

Microlith (54737) | more than 2 years ago | (#37578772)

What, and create yet another external dependency on the efforts of some other corporation? No, it's much more sane to contribute to existing open source development efforts that exist largely independently of the goals of some other company.

Android phone under $100 (2)

blind biker (1066130) | more than 2 years ago | (#37578696)

Even here, in Finland (one of the most expensive countries in Europe), you can find decent Android phones for under $100. I don't see how Nokia can compete, after Elop's brand suicide.

Re:Android phone under $100 (1)

tsa (15680) | more than 2 years ago | (#37578894)

Could you name me some of those decent Android phones? I'd like one for that money but I have no idea what to look for. There is so much on the market!

Re:Android phone under $100 (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#37579220)

Half a year ago I bought an HTC Legend for twice that price, maybe it has gone down or HTC has lower class androids.

Re:Android phone under $100 (1)

Kynde (324134) | more than 2 years ago | (#37579228)

For Androids the cheapest Huaweis sell here for about 110e and you get a ton of options around 150e.

There are a lot of Nokians that sell between 50e and 100e, but I doubt that Nokia could sell anything they can jam linux into below 100e. Those cheap ass phones are all series40 with virtually zero sw costs and a line of phones they've been making for ten years now so no wonder they can make them cheap. Nokia always had good hardware manufacturing and logistics, it's what they did and didn't do with software that sunk them into the maelstrom they're in now.

Re:Android phone under $100 (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#37579724)

There was also a phone released about a year ago called Orange San Francisco (a.k.a. ZTE Blade) sold in UK for £99. It did have a low end Qualcomm 600Mhz processor, but didn't compromise on RAM (512MB) or screen (480x800 OLED and later LCD).

Re:Android phone under $100 (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#37579040)

Have not seen any under 74 eur (100 usd) without subsidies so I am still guessing that they are non-existent.
ZTE Blade seems to be now around 180 eur (was when introduced around 110 euros) without subsidies apparently.

Minus 1, Troll) (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#37578782)

as poSsible? How [goat.cx]

Good job (1)

niw3 (1029008) | more than 2 years ago | (#37578784)

1. Miss the smartphone train
2. Keep polluting the product range with many slightly different dumb/smart phones over the years
3. Develop several operating systems without selling them in the form of decent products
4. Purchase Trolltech for $150M [citation needed] so that you can (further) develop OSes/frameworks
5. Trash the OSes developed to in favor of MS
6. Make other OSes
7. Aim at cheap ($100) phones (you know what? cheap phone lovers don't buy apps that often)
8. Bankrupt

Re:Good job (1)

That Guy From Mrktng (2274712) | more than 2 years ago | (#37578996)

These are probably not "smartphones" but more like feature phones with linux and $intertubes and from that perspective and targeting them to the 90% [citation needed] of the market that don't care about "smarthphones" Nokia may be successful.

But yeah! as you put it and if I were a Nokia employee/stockholder/user, I'd be worried.

Linux Rocks! (1)

sunr2007 (2309530) | more than 2 years ago | (#37578798)

This is another proof that no Mainstream company can ever ignore linux in the long run. the beauty of linux is such that it scales to sub $100 smartphone and HPC . I bet any OS this planet can do that. sure there are patent problems sorrounding it but thats not going to stop companies from adopting. Nokia should have a plan B if they dont get hit with windows smartphone otherwise they are doomed forever. they know this . thats the reason they are doing this . Nokia backed of Meego and announced symbain wil wont that long but u should have a alternative for tat plan. and this is that alternative . unless MS mole stephen elop tries to do something nasty with windows smartphone i think Nokia wil be a hit with this model. ALL the best Nokia. lets wait for a great sub $100 phone.

Microsoft Unix (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#37578828)

Am I the only person who remembers Microsoft Xenix?

Load More Comments
Slashdot Account

Need an Account?

Forgot your password?

Don't worry, we never post anything without your permission.

Submission Text Formatting Tips

We support a small subset of HTML, namely these tags:

  • b
  • i
  • p
  • br
  • a
  • ol
  • ul
  • li
  • dl
  • dt
  • dd
  • em
  • strong
  • tt
  • blockquote
  • div
  • quote
  • ecode

"ecode" can be used for code snippets, for example:

<ecode>    while(1) { do_something(); } </ecode>
Create a Slashdot Account

Loading...