Openmoko Mobile Linux

I have been following the open Moko project and the qtopia greenphone for a while. We also have Nokia launching the N900 tablet all employing Linux.

But it comes as a surprise that Ubuntu is launching a version for mobile smartphones or Mobile Internet Devices (MIDs) as the industry is calling them. They have teamed up with Intel and some new low power chips that should develop some interesting applications.

It is interesting to read through the discussions on the Open Moko list as these can be very wide ranging. Fro instance a recent discussion on the size of the audio jack on the device, was it to be 2.5mm or 3.5mm. Most phones have 2.5mm jacks, but the 3.5 jack is the standard for mp3 players. The arguments ranged from using an adaptor, to routing of audio and microphone when a Bluetooth headset is there as well as the wired headphones.

The detail of the arguments and discussions I am sure are far more extensive than would ever take place in a closed development environment. This should result in much better design decisions and a better product, that only an open development could achieve. I have seen how hard it is to get feedback from customers who have purchased products, so giving people a stake in the open development process seems to generate much more feedback.


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