Motorola, NEC and Panasonic have launched seven mobile handsets based on the LiMo (Linux for Mobile) software platform, bringing to 21 the number of phones now available in this format, all made by the same trio of companies.
Linux-based mobiles, although currently accounting for a tiny percentage of the handsets on the market, have been tipped to be far more widespread in the near future.
Features available on the news phones, dependent on carrier as well as the handset, include: multi-band 3G/high-speed downlink packet access (HSDPA) roaming; global positioning system (GPS) functionality; mobile TV and advanced video streaming; secure payment; and advanced mail functionalities.
The new handsets are: Motorola Motozine ZN5; NEC Foma N906i, N906iμ, N906iL and N706i; and Panasonic Foma P906i and P706iμ.
LiMo was founded in January 2007 to promote open standards in mobile phone software.
Its rivals include: Android, another Linux-based body comprising Google and the Open Handset Alliance; Symbian, now owned by Nokia but with control divested to the Symbian Foundation to run as an open source operating system; and Microsoft's Windows Mobile.
Other LiMo founders include Vodafone, Orange and NTT DoCoMo and members now include Mozilla and LG.
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