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By 22 November 2012 | Categories: news

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Android and iOS is making life difficult for established competing platforms such as Windows Phone 8, but this has not deterred the development of novel mobile platforms. A new start-up company named Jolla has showcased Sailfish, a newly developed mobile operating system (OS) based upon the now defunct MeeGo OS.

Jolla mostly consists of former Nokia employees who worked on the Finnish phone giant’s N9 smartphone that impressed us enough to make it onto our Top 5 smartphones for 2011 list.

They left the company following its decision to ditch MeeGo (and Symbian) in favour of Windows Phone OS. The company will be releasing the Sailfish SDK (software development kit) “soon” enabling interested developers to create apps for the new platform and has unveiled some elements of the user interface (UI, video posted below) of this swipe-friendly OS.

Unsurprisingly, this UI bares more than a striking resemblance to MeeGo, enabling you to swipe out of open applications. There is a dedicated homescreen for open apps that allows users to easily switch in between live apps. The start-up firm stated that the Sailfish OS and UI support smartphones, tablets, smart TVs, as well as in-car car infotainment systems.

First hardware partner on board

In addition, Jolla revealed that ST-Ericsson, a venture of STMicroelectronics and Ericsson, boarded the Sailfish wagon by supporting the platform with its NovaThor range of mobile processors.

Peter Oaklander, ST-Ericsson’s senior VP for sales and marketing stated: “We are pleased to add Sailfish OS to the mobile operating systems supported on our NovaThor ModAp platforms. Supporting Sailfish from its inception shows how flexibly ST-Ericsson’s NovaThor platforms can adapt to different mobile OS’s and we look forward to seeing Sailfish powered devices in the market next year.”

Marc Dillon, CEO of Jolla added: “We warmly welcome ST-Ericsson onboard. It is great that this industry leader is partnering with us and Sailfish. ST-Ericsson’s NovaThor platform combined with Sailfish OS will enable vendors to bring highly competitive mobile products to the market. We welcome other players in the mobile industry to join and contribute to this game changing movement. We also target to announce other chipset provider partnerships soon.”

While it is always good to see another new mobile platform that offers something different to users, we can’t help but wonder how successful Sailfish will be within the highly competitive mobile device market. 

In other mobile platform related news, Nokia recently introduced HERE, its new mapping and location-based service for multiple mobile operating systems including iOS, Android and Mozilla’s forthcoming Firefox OS.

Let us know what you think about Sailfish by posting a comment below, especially if you’ve used a Meego-running Nokia N9 before.

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