Verizon Wireless Rumored To Support Linux Mobile Phones Going Forward


Verizon Wireless (NYSE: VZ) is close to announcing the support for Linux-based mobile phones to push forward the company’s “Any Apps, Any Device” open-access agenda, Unstrung reports. The Linux platform is being developed in part by the efforts of the LiMo Foundation, which is supported by companies like Motorola (NYSE: MOT), NTT DoCoMo (NYSE: DCM), Vodafone and Samsung. Tomorrow, the LiMo Foundation has a conference call scheduled for early morning, saying the purpose is to announce the addition of several strategic new members; and will feature the foundation’s executive director in addition to a senior executive from a U.S. operator.

The operating systems, such as the Linux one, or the one being developed by Google (NSDQ: GOOG), or more established ones like Microsoft’s (NSDQ: MSFT) Windows Mobile or Symbian, are considered easier to develop applications for because they are open platforms. Most handsets today use proprietary software created by handset manufacturers that must be tweaked for specific applications for each operator, a slow and time-consuming process. In that way, adopting operating systems like Linux would further Verizon’s open-access efforts. For now, its mostly up to Verizon Wireless how open the handsets are, but going forward, a user, for instance, who has a Linux phone should be able to download Linux applications.

Other operators that have already come out in support of LiMo is NTT DoCoMo, Orange and Vodafone (NYSE: VOD). Google’s Android operating system has the support of more operators through its Open Handset Alliance, including China Mobile, KDDI, NTT DoCoMo, Sprint (NYSE: S) Nextel, T-Mobile, Telecom Italia and Telefonica.

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