Symbian Foundation head Lee Williams has stepped down from his role effective Tuesday, the company said in an official statement. Williams, whose title was Executive Director, has been replaced by former Chief Financial Officer Tim Holbrow. Symbian is majority-owned by Nokia, a company that is no stranger to shakeups at the top — the Finnish manufacturer recently named a new CEO and shuffled several executive roles. Nokia also lost its head of mobile solutions last month when Anssi Vanjoki resigned. Despite all this turmoil and a constant stream of criticism from media, blogs and even users, Nokia’s Symbian OS remains the most popular smartphone operating system in the world by a significant margin. Hit the jump for the Symbian Foundation’s full statement. More →
Yesterday, we saw some high-roller images of the Nokia C7 surface on a Chinese blog, and now today we get to see the C7 on video with some images of the N9 slider phone as an added bonus. The C7 video is in Mandarin, but you get a pretty good glimpse at the handsets size and physical layout. We’ve got the three minute clip ready for your scrutiny after the break. Next on deck is the Nokia N9. The device is seen running an unidentifiable operating system (it could be MeeGo though!), and has that Macbook unibody look and feel thanks to its black-over-silver keyboard. For whatever reason, the device’s software was not detailed, but Chinese website tieba.baidu.com did do the honors of dismantling the handset. Hit the jump, have a look, and let us know what you think. More →
Symbian released the source code for the S^4 homescreen application on Friday and posted up a gallery of images that provides a quick glimpse of the UI for the next generation Symbian operating system. The screengrabs show the homescreen with a clock widget, application categories, search, wallpaper selector, and more. One image is above and the remaining six are after the jump. Take a look and let us know your first impressions of Symbian^4 in the comments. More →
Nick Jones of Gartner published a brief research note on his blog that paints a bleak picture of Symbian. According to Jones, Symbian is still the dominant platform, but it is losing market share at an accelerating pace as rivals like Android and iOS continue their upward trend. Jones is equally bearish regarding the future of Symbian and points to a product roadmap that is filled with features like audio policy packages, WiFi direct, and other similar additions that are of little interest to consumers. He even goes so far as to suggest that the Symbian Foundation should invest in some skunkworks projects or launch a design contest as a contingency plan in case Symbian^4 fails to deliver as promised. Wow. So what do you think, is this admonishment undeserved or does the Symbian Foundation and Nokia need a wake up call?
Thanks, johnny99! More →
Well, at least the significance of the Symbian Duck’s giant robotic feet is clear now — they’re going to walk all over developers! Oh come on. We kid… We kid… Truth be told, there’s no one as happy as we are to learn that Symbian^4 will finally break app compatibility. This obvious-turned-revelatory tidbit was covered in a recent interview with Symbian Foundation Catalyst and Futurist David Wood where he discusses the death of Avkon and the birth of Qt where UI elements are concerned. While we’re insanely pro-developer here at BGR, we must be clear in stating that this is awesome, awesome news. Why? Because it confirms what we already knew and what we’ve been dreaming about for what seems like an eternity — Symbian will actually find itself wrapped in a (hopefully) fresh new UI sometime in the not-so-distant future. Think late 2010ish/early 2011ish where consumers are concerned. As for what this means to developers, yes there will be some work involved in order to update the current crop of apps. That is most definitely not a bad thing, however. Come on guys, S60 3rd launched in what, 1924? We’ve been compatible for long enough. It’s time to freshen things up a bit and get rid of that stagnant look that should have been updated long ago. If that means a little more work for devs, we hope they embrace it with open arms.
[Via Engadget Mobile]
Making a mobile OS “open” is one thing, but this is unlike anything we’ve seen to date. The Symbian Foundation — the newly formed group charged with bringing Nokia’s ever-popular OS into the 21st century — needs your help. Finding a way to update that aged UI is a bit trying we presume (though we wouldn’t mind seeing TAT finally give it a shot) so Scott Weiss, the Symbian Foundation’s UI Technology Manager, has officially opened the UI conversation to the world. The newly launched “Symbian UI Brainstorm” blog asks users to email suggestions that will possibly be transformed into sketches and discussed on the blog. Symbian fans and critics alike have become increasingly vocal with regards to the S60 UI so this could be the perfect opportunity to be heard by the one man who actually cares what they have to say. And who knows? Your great idea might become a reality some day — as part of Symbian^7 or ^8, perhaps. Ok Symbian fans, hit the read link and get to work.
It might have taken a while for the Symbian Foundation to get rolling but if its newly-announced development schedule is even close to accurate, play time is most definitely over. Symbian, shall we say, hasn’t exactly been speedy with platform updates in the past. Fast forward to the group’s new schedule seen above and we’re looking at a new platform every six months. Hmm. To start things off, the new platforms now have an agreed naming convention: Symbian^N, where N is the version number. The Symbian Foundation’s David Wood explains:
The simplest way to pronounce “Symbian^2″ is “Symbian two”… You can also view the ‘^’ as an upside down ‘v’. So we’re telling the world that, in a way, we are intending to turn versioning upside down – by opening up our roadmap discussions to the entire community.
Symbian^2 — based on S60 5th Edition — will be feature-complete by the middle of this year and according to the Foundation, we could see devices running ^2 by the end of the year. Next up is Symbian^3 which is already mapped out for the most part and could reach the market by the middle of 2010. Symbian^4 is currently in the mapping phase and is scheduled for hardening before 2010 is through. Ambitious, aggressive and damn near crazy… We like it.
[Via Phone Scoop]