The Mobile Stack Evolves

MocoNews confirms what has been talked about for months now–that Voda is making a major shift in how it selects its devices. No more proprietary phone OSs developed by clueless ODMs who really don’t get SW. Voda’s future will be based on Symbian Series 60 (because of market share & device capabilities), Linux (because it is the low cost future) and Windows Mobile (because of its enterprise capabilities).

I would expect lots more carriers to move in the same direction. The winners are going to be MS, Adobe (because of Flash Lite) and the emerging pack of mobile Linux players to whom the ODMs will outsource much of the Linux work. Symbian is too closed for my taste–their lead is primarily driven by device quality as opposed to software quality. That’s a tenuous position to maintain.

There are two big holes in the mobile Linux story. The first one is presentation–C++ GUIs aren’t the right answer. Note their departure from PCs and their absence on the Net. The second one is middleware–tying all the various phone services together. C/C++ is a terrible choice for that type of work.

My ideal phone stack consists of Linux as the HW abstraction layer, real-time Java as the phone middleware and Flash Lite as the presentation tier.

About Simeon Simeonov

I'm an entrepreneur, hacker, angel investor and reformed VC. I am currently Founder & CTO of Swoop, a search advertising platform. Through FastIgnite I invest in and work with a few great startups to get more done with less. Learn more, follow @simeons on Twitter and connect with me on LinkedIn.
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4 Responses to The Mobile Stack Evolves

  1. Jag says:

    You mention “real-time Java as the phone middleware”. This is interesting and worth elaborating on. Do you mean Java as in J2ME and MIDP implementations? Or is it another, separate implementation layer based upon Java?

    If the former, then any thoughts on to what extent MIDP3 will overcome the issues of the prior version specs?

    The reason why this is interesting is because an alternative(?) is FL binding more closely to underlying phone capabilities.

    Also: what is your opinion on Javascript/DHTML/Ajax etc. and other industry developments like Openwave’s MIDAS, Opera Platform etc. Your thoughts would be appreciated!

  2. Jag, good questions. I’m writing a longer post on the subject that’ll also go to Ajit Jaokar’s OpenGardens blog.

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