Smartphone, Netbook, and Now What? - InformationWeek

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6/24/2009
06:22 AM
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Smartphone, Netbook, and Now What?

The better mouse trap, that is what vendors are constantly searching for. As technology evolves, they are constantly on the lookout for new ways to package it and deliver better products to customers. To meet that goal, one of the leading smartphone suppliers has teamed with a top microprocessor supplier, however, questions remain about their alliance will deliver.

The better mouse trap, that is what vendors are constantly searching for. As technology evolves, they are constantly on the lookout for new ways to package it and deliver better products to customers. To meet that goal, one of the leading smartphone suppliers has teamed with a top microprocessor supplier, however, questions remain about their alliance will deliver.Nokia has joined forces with Intel to develop a new class of mobile devices, ones the twosome termed beyond today's smartphones, notebooks and netbooks. The partnership plans to support Intel's Moblin and Nokia's Maeomo operating systems, both of which are mobile variants of Linux. But the duet did not set any delivery dates for their new products. Intel seems to have the most to gain from the partnership. The company has been only a minor player in the mobile market with its Atom microprocessor. Because of the popularity of smart phones and the emergence of netbooks, the company wanted to boost its presence in this space. Nokia has been a mobile market leader and can help increase Atoms acceptance.

The question now is: What will they build? The dividing lines between PCs and phones have been blurring as the formers form factors decreased and latters processing power increased. Netbooks are an emerging product genre that takes advantage of those changes. Yet Intel and Nokia seem to think that there is an opportunity to carve out another device type in this space. Perhaps, the vendors could be working on tablet systems, such as Nokia's N810 Internet Tablet. Perhaps, the announcement is much ado about nothing. Time will tell.

For small and medium businesses, the partnership will have little impact in the short term. Since the two were so secretive about their project, it is difficult to discern when their joint work will bear fruit. What is clear is that established vendors, such as Nokia and Intel, are paying a lot of attention to the mobile device market. Consequently, companies will have a growing number of devices to choose for their employees as vendors search for better mouse traps.

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