Since Nokia World, there has been a lot of positive buzz and discussion around Nokia’s operating systems. However, in the past couple of days, there have been some speculative stories about Nokia’s operator customization strategy for Maemo. Many reports have erroneously suggested that Nokia will not support operator customization for Maemo devices – a fact that is simply incorrect.
Perhaps a bit of background is needed here.
Nokia has always taken a very pragmatic approach when it comes to operating systems in mobile devices – ranging from Series 30, our basic OS for voice-optimized phones, to Windows 7, a logical choice for our Booklet 3G mini-laptop.
For example, in smartphones, we continue to believe that Symbian is the best alternative in enabling compelling mobile experiences for hundreds of millions of people around the world. Nokia currently offers the industry’s broadest range of smartphone models based on the Symbian OS. One of Symbian’s greatest strengths is its breadth – Symbian supports more than 40 languages, with multiple form factors at a range of price points, and support both touch, qwerty as well as the traditional ITU keypad. Symbian has been specifically developed to support operator customization, which enables operators to highlight their brand identity and services to their customers. Our commitment to Symbian was underscored last year when we acquired the company and established the Symbian Foundation to ensure its future development as an open source platform.
In 2005, Nokia introduced the first Nokia Internet Tablet. This Tablet was based on Maemo software, which took its cues from the desktop computer, as opposed to the mobile phone. Maemo was developed for multi-tasking and to create the best possible browsing experience in a hand-held device.
Last month, Nokia unveiled the Nokia N900, based on the 4th generation of Maemo software. The Nokia N900 is a natural evolution of our Internet-optimized devices and marks the first time that we have added cellular connectivity to a Maemo device.
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Fast forward to today…
This week, there have been a number of speculative stories suggesting that Nokia will not allow for operator customization of Maemo devices. Seems a few people are getting ahead of themselves. As we have said over the past couple of weeks, our plan with Maemo is to focus on the consumer experience – integrating applications and services from Nokia, our broad community of developers and publishers and, of course, from our operator customers. While we have not announced immediate plans to offer an operator variant for the N900, there are many customization points for operators on the N900. It would be absolutely incorrect to assume that we will not offer operators the ability to tailor future Maemo devices to suit their needs.
Of course, it is fantastic to see the positive buzz building around Maemo and the Nokia N900, so we wanted to clear up these few important details that appear to have been misunderstood.