Nokia to use WebKit

Nokia is looking to leverage WebKit, the open-source project started by Apple based on Konqeror’s KHTML, in their next generation of mobile phones, the Series 60:

“Apple is pleased to assist Nokia in creating their new Series 60 browser based on the same KHTML open source technology that powers Apple’s Safari,” said Philip Schiller, Apple’s senior vice president of Worldwide Product Marketing. “The Safari Web Kit’s blazing performance, efficient code base and support for open standards make it an ideal open source technology for projects like Nokia’s new Series 60 browser.” Read more

What’s interesting is that Nokia Phones run the Symbian OS, and that quite a few other phones also run the Symbian OS. WebKit is a BSD License, and its components WebCore and JavaScriptCore, which are built from KHTML/KJS, are under an LGPL License. Based on Nokia’s past relationships with open-source efforts, chances they’ll contribute their porting efforts to the WebKit project are pretty high. This would likely bring a new strong browser contender to the mobile marketplace, largely currently dominated by Windows CE/Internet Explorer.

Now, let’s be crazy for a second and imagine Dashboard widgets on a Nokia phone? CPU power, memory consumption, screen real-estate and abstracting away Canvas and OS calls, are small challenges for Nokia engineers to overcome! :)

update: Om Malik weighs-in, baffled. Om is a heavy Nokia user and has a long-standing relationship with their products.