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Linux smartphones given software boost

Suite aims to unify Linux development

Trolltech is offering a suite of products designed to make it easier for mobile phone makers to develop Linux-based smartphones.

Called the Qtopia Greensuite, it aims to unify the disjointed mobile Linux development environment by bundling together several applications and tools that are available separately today from a variety of vendors.

The products in the suite include RealNetworks’ mobile multimedia software, Opera's mobile phone browser, MontaVista's operating system and Mimer's SQL database management product.

The suit also includes WAP (Wireless Application Protocol) and HTML browsers, messaging software, video and audio recording capabilities, DRM (digital rights management), 3D graphics, video telephony, VOIP (voice over IP) support, a VPN (Virtual Private Network) client and Java MIDP (Mobile Information Device Profile).

The first version of the suite is due in the second quarter of next year.

While interest in mobile Linux is growing, the disjointed development environment has slowed momentum. Several groups have formed in the past couple of years to try to unify things.

The Linux Phone Standards Forum, whose members include France Telecom, MontaVista and VirtualLogix, are creating application programming interfaces to allow applications to interoperate across Linux handsets. The Mobile Linux Initiative, started by the Open Source Development Labs with members including Motorola, Intel and NEC, is unifying developments around the mobile Linux kernel.

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