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Android Rival Collects Some Well-Heeled Friends
The operating system, which is looking to clean up in China, is kind of a known entity

Android will be getting competition from an open source operating system that's coming to market backed by a Hong Kong-based ecosystem alliance of still unnamed chipset vendors, OEM and ODM manufacturers, operators and retailers willing to pour €200 million into it and that, folks, is nearly $260 million.

The operating system, which is looking to clean up in China, is kind of a known entity. It's a new and improved version of MeeGo, the merger of Nokia's Maemo Linux and Intel's Moblin Linux, which Nokia was going to use to replace its old flagship Symbian operating system before Microsoft sweet-talked Nokia into using Windows.

Abandoned by Nokia, MeeGo has been kept alive by a bunch of ex-Nokia engineers at a Finnish start-up called Jolla Ltd - who were encouraged by Nokia and expect to license the widgetry to device makers, design houses and service companies come the spring.

There's no telling who all could join the budding ecosystem because of the mounting evidence that Android infringes other people's IP, a patent situation that's made mobile device vendors edgy and reportedly restless for an alternative.

Jolla, which claims to have picked up leading players in the industry and is confident enough in the plan to sink €10 million of its own money into it, says it doesn't have a patent problem.

It also says it's got a fully productized mobile operating system codenamed Sailfish that builds on and contributes to existing open source projects such as the Qt Project and MeeGo fork Mer core and is "ready to go." It plans to show it off next month.

Apparently the base Sunfish code - which according to Wikipedia is based on the MeeGo API and the core OS from Mer - will be free, and Jolla figures to make money licensing Jolla-developed software features and IP related to the user interface.

The OS also uses Qt, QML and HTML5 and one might count on native multitasking, application integration and data integration.

Jolla CEO Jussi Hurmola said in a statement Tuesday that "China is a game changer in the technology industry. The next big mobile change will come from China and Jolla wants to be enabling it. There are massive resources and competence to transport the whole industry."

It appears then that Jolla and its friends, who include D.Phone, one of the biggest Chinese phone retailers with around 2,000 retail stores and a strategic partner in China Telecom, is hoping to play in the country's massive mass market with a low-end smartphone, potentially dimming whatever Chinese ambitions Android, Apple and Microsoft harbor.

It reportedly got a sales contract from D.Phone this summer.

The OS, however, isn't just for low-end phones. The OS and UX are reportedly highly scalable and will also support tablets, televisions, automotive and other device classes. The kernel, Jussi says on Twitter, depends on the hardware. The user experience is supposed to be different from either Android or Apple and doesn't require users to open and shut apps.

Hurmola has previously said, "With Android we can only copy but with MeeGo we can introduce something brand new to the market. We want to lead in technology and lead in UI, that's our business."

To support its initial moves into the market Jolla is setting up R&D operations in Hong Kong and Mainland China to lead the development of the alliance and a community-based ecosystem.

MeeGo will need apps and there's reportedly a version of Angry Birds for it, but there's been no talk of an SDK, only an Application Compatibility Layer that will let it run unmodified Android software, a situation Oracle may not care much for because it leverages the Android runtime environment and the Dalvik VM.

The Sailfish alliance data center will be hosted by Cyberport Hong Kong, which has Internet backbones going to China, Europe and the US. It will host Sailfish's infrastructure, data, productization facilities and collaboration services. Cyberport will also provide the ecosystem's upcoming cloud services.

The Wall Street Journal says Jolla will need to raise another €50 million in equity funding this spring and may quickly go public to raise financing.

By the way, Jolla is Finnish for dinghy, a skiff small enough for a sailfish to swamp.

About Maureen O'Gara
Maureen O'Gara the most read technology reporter for the past 20 years, is the Cloud Computing and Virtualization News Desk editor of SYS-CON Media. She is the publisher of famous "Billygrams" and the editor-in-chief of "Client/Server News" for more than a decade. One of the most respected technology reporters in the business, Maureen can be reached by email at maureen(at)sys-con.com or paperboy(at)g2news.com, and by phone at 516 759-7025. Twitter: @MaureenOGara

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Presentation Slides
In his general session at 19th Cloud Expo, Manish Dixit, VP of Product and Engineering at Dice, discussed how Dice leverages data insights a...
Security, data privacy, reliability and regulatory compliance are critical factors when evaluating whether to move business applications fro...

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MATTHIEU
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goTraverse

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HERBERTS
Cityzen Data

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WebRTC Summit New York All-Star Speakers Include

CLELAND
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Catchpoint

WALLGREN
Electric Cloud

HINCH-
CLIFFE

7Summits

DE SOUZA
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RANDALL
Gartner

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SCHULZ
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Bsquare

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LEVANT-LEVI
testRTC

VARAN NATH
GE

COOPER
M2Mi

SENAY
Teletax

SKEEN
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KOCHER
Grey Heron

GREENE
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MAGUIRE
HP

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STEINER-
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AweSense

LYNN
AgilData

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Cloudata

DUFOUR
Webroot

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JONES
Deep

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NICTA

NIELSEN
Redis

PAOLAL-
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DataArchon

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IBM

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TAMASKAR
GENBAND

SUBRA
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Emcien

LEVESQUE
Windstream

IVANOV
StorPool

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TOLL
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Microsoft

BEARFIELD
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Akana

PILUSO
SIASMSP

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IBM Cloudant

SHAN
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EMC

BRON-
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Modulus

PAIGE
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KATZEN
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SLOPER
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SRINIVAS
EMC

TALREJA
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Systems Services Inc.

COLLISON
Apcera

PRABHU
OpenCrowd

LYNN
CodeFutures

SWARTZ
Ericsson

MOSHENKO
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Stateless Networks

MURPHY
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Testimonials
This week I had the pleasure of delivering the opening keynote at Cloud Expo New York. It was amazing to be back in the great city of New York with thousands of cloud enthusiasts eager to learn about the next step on their journey to embracing a cloud-first worldl."
@SteveMar_Msft
General Manager of Window Azure
 
How does Cloud Expo do it every year? Another INCREDIBLE show - our heads are spinning - so fun and informative."
@SOASoftwareInc
 
Thank you @ThingsExpo for such a great event. All of the people we met over the past three days makes us confident IoT has a bright future."
Yasser Khan
CEO of @Cnnct2me
 
One of the best conferences we have attended in a while. Great job, Cloud Expo team! Keep it going."

@Peak_Ten


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Digital Transformation Blogs
In his general session at 19th Cloud Expo, Manish Dixit, VP of Product and Engineering at Dice, discussed how Dice leverages data insights and tools to help both tech professionals and recruiters better understand how skills relate to each other and which skills are in high demand using interactive visualizations and salary indicator tools to maximize earning potential. Manish Dixit is VP of Product and Engineering at Dice. As the leader of the Product, Engineering and Data Sciences team at Dice, he takes a metrics-driven approach to management. His experience in building and managing high ...
In this presentation, you will learn first hand what works and what doesn't while architecting and deploying OpenStack. Some of the topics will include:- best practices for creating repeatable deployments of OpenStack- multi-site considerations- how to customize OpenStack to integrate with your existing systems and security best practices.
Security, data privacy, reliability and regulatory compliance are critical factors when evaluating whether to move business applications from in-house client hosted environments to a cloud platform. In her session at 18th Cloud Expo, Vandana Viswanathan, Associate Director at Cognizant, In this session, will provide an orientation to the five stages required to implement a cloud hosted solution validation strategy.