Thanks to the recent Macworld 2010 held in San Francisco and the Mobile World Congress being held these days in Barcelona we have experienced a boom in news about the companies that represent Apple’s most serious competition. And it seems that they have done their homework, because they are all moving pieces to face the iPhone with very good weapons .
The first of these, MeeGo: a Linux-based operating system created from the merger of Nokia’s Maemo system and Intel’s Moblin. This system is designed to run on the latest generation of phones, ultra-portable computers (or tablets), televisions and even cars.
MeeGo is a double-edged sword, because it is designed on an open platform and is compatible with Intel and ARM chips , and can be installed in any device that integrates those chips. In addition, the system architecture allows developers to create applications for MeeGo that would also work on other platforms, such as Symbian.
Statements were soon forthcoming. A system like MeeGo is something Apple would have to watch out for, as it could emerge as a strong competitor to the iPhone and iPad . This system is expected to arrive around the second quarter of this year.
Another weapon to talk about is Windows Phone 7 Series, the new generation of Microsoft’s mobile operating system which was presented yesterday by Steve Ballmer at the Mobile World Congress and which represents a “clean slate” with a completely different system concept to the one we were used to from the Redmond company.
Windows Phone 7 Series includes a versatile startup screen with smart icons that show real-time information , an interface inherited from Zune players much simpler and more intuitive than the menus and buttons of Windows Mobile 6, merger with the most visited social networks, integration with the XBOX Live platform… it seems that Microsoft, although late, has learned from its mistakes and looking at the competition and has brought out a competent product.
We also have Symbian^3, a system that takes advantage of multi-touch screens in a very similar way to the iPhone OS (we can even see something similar to the coverflow in the video you have over these lines). The key features of this system: HDMI connectivity and a 100% open source platform. It will appear in mobile phones from the second half of 2010.
Finally we have Wholesale Applications Community, an alliance between no less than 24 companies with an influence of more than three billion users to ” offer an open platform that will provide applications for all mobile phone users”. It would not compete directly with the iPhone, but being such a unified and widespread platform could make the Apple app store lose users.