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Linux smartphones, devices hot in China, stack vendor says

Apr 18, 2005 — by Henry Kingman — from the LinuxDevices Archive
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Trolltech has opened an office in Beijing, and says six design houses in China are using its software in high-end mobile devices. The company says worldwide users of Qtopia and its other device-oriented software number 50, including “more than 20” designing and making mobile phones.

(Click for larger view of Yulong Coolpad 858)

Trolltech's device-oriented products include:

Trolltech says it recently opened a office in Beijing, where it cooperates with a dozen Chinese or China-based mobile device OEMs (original equipment manufacturers) and ODMs (original design manufacturers). Of these, half are actively developing Linux-based smartphones, PDAs, or other mobile devices, it says, including:

  • Adbon Technology — An ODM based in Beijing that uses Qtopia to develop portable video player (PMC), PDA, and smartphone products
  • BOE Technology Group Co., Ltd (BOE) — A display-focused company that has successfully trialed prototype portable multimedia terminal and smartphone products based on Linux and Qtopia
  • CEC Wireless/Cellon (CECW/Cellon) — A large, independent design house for wireless GSM/GPRS modules and terminals that is developing video phones with Trolltech software
  • Jiangsu Dongda (SEUIC) — A private ODM/OEM services company in Nanjing that has released the HAPO2000 Linux PDA, and is currently developing smartphones and PMC (handheld video player) products using Trolltech software
  • Yuhua TelTech — An ODM for mobile devices that used Qtopia Phone Edition in its Normandy Linux smartphone, expected in Q3 of 2005
  • Yulong — An ODM based in Shenzhen that already ships phones based on its Linux-based LinuosTel smartphone OS, including the Coolpad 858 GSM/CDMA phone (pictured above-right), and will use Qtopia as one of the software platforms in future smartphones

James Wu, CEO of Yuhua TelTech, said, “With Normandy (see story), we are able to meet the strong demand for an enhanced, full-featured user experience. We expect it to be a major success in the Chinese market.”

Trolltech founder Haavard Nord said, “China is at the cutting-edge of development in the mobile device industry. The fact that Chinese design houses are using embedded Linux to develop new handsets shows that Linux is already a proven alternative.”

Trolltech notes that a Zelos Group report on the smartphone market found Linux scores highest on openness and cost, the two criteria most important to OEMs and carriers. “While Symbian will be the market share leader in the next 24 to 36 months,” the February, 2004 report concluded, “Linux will threaten for long-term dominance. Linux leads other platforms in openness and low cost — factors that are essentials to success in a market defined by tight margins, rapid innovation, and standards adherence.”

Trolltech announced in February it expected 2005 to be a real “breakout year” for Linux smartphones, with more than 20 designs based on Linux and Qt/Qtopia expected to reach market. Trolltech gained a reseller in Japan, Toshiba Information Systems, last fall.

This article was originally published on LinuxDevices and has been donated to the open source community by QuinStreet Inc. Please visit for up-to-date news and articles about Linux and open source.

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