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Guest Opinion: LiMo should go back to the drawing board

Mar 18, 2009 — by Eric Brown — from the LinuxDevices Archive — 1 views

[Updated Mar. 19] — LiMo must change strategies to stay relevant, writes VisionMobile Research Director Andreas Constantinou in this hard-hitting guest opinion piece. Only by focusing on the service layer can the influential but exclusive organization rise above today's open source value line, he suggests.

Constantinou acknowledges some successes for LiMo. He still likes its “IP safe harbor” component, and the “political capital” it has amassed, which he says can save its members “business development” time. But, the organizational fees are exorbitant, he suggests, while the software received in return amounts to only a few percent of what is needed to build a mobile phone.

On the plus side, LiMo lets members source components from multiple vendors. On the downside, delays hashing out APIs and finalizing specs have hurt adoption, Constantinou suggests. He comments, “While LiMo may claim that its members should be allowed to differentiate on top of the middleware, here we have another classic case of an industry consortium outpaced by technology adoption.”

Amidst this seemingly bleak prognosis for LiMo, Constantinou sees one ray of hope. In a world of free stacks like Android, a soon to be open-source Symbian, and the newly LGPL-licensed Qt, not to mention the free Webkit browser, LiMo can only leapfrog the “value line” in open source by focusing on the service layer, he suggests, imagining a collaboratively developed implementation of something like Palm's WebOS.

Click below to read the full guest opinion.

Guest opinion: LiMo should go back to the drawing board

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