Motorola (s mot) is finding success with its Google (s goog) Android-powered Droid, but the handset maker’s co-CEO has previously indicated that he wants Motorola to have its own mobile operating system and supporting ecosystem. It may have found one, in the form of a Linux-based platform from Azingo. Android and Me notes that LinkedIn now shows an Azingo engineer as being employed by Motorola, potentially indicating that Motorola has purchased Azingo. Such an acquisition would provide Motorola with greater control over software offerings of future handsets, but more importantly, would help the company differentiate itself from competitors.
With such differentiation however, comes the challenge of creating a thriving ecosystem. By using Android for smartphones, Motorola currently enjoys the benefits of the Android developer community and the Android Market. If Motorola were to strike out on its own with a brand-new OS, however, it would lose those important benefits. And Motorola co-CEO, Sanjay Jha, clearly recognizes this, noting on the company first-quarter earnings call:
“I’ve always felt that owning your OS is important, provided you have an ecosystem, you have all the services and you have an ability and the scale to execute on keeping that OS at the leading edge. And I continue to believe that at some point, if we have all of those attributes, that owning our own OS will be a very important thing.”
An early look at Azingo’s mobile platform from the 2009 Mobile World Congress shows a fairly robust set of widgets, a WebKit browser, extensive application suites and even support for Flash Lite (s adbe). Essentially, Azingo Mobile 2.0 is a full smartphone platform on its own, even without third-party software. There’s also specific mention of an App Store for Azingo apps, so if Motorola did purchase the company, it may have acquired not just a new mobile operating system, but the foundation of a supporting ecosystem as well.
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Image courtesy of Azingo