Nokia releases first open-source Symbian device

Nokia N8I previously posted on how Nokia open-sourced the Symbian mobile operating system and the advantages this will bring to mobile web developers. Nokia has now released their first mobile device based on the open-source version of Symbian, the Nokia N8 phone.

It is the first version of the software since the Symbian foundation announced that it had made its code open source in February.

The Foundation – which includes Nokia, Motorola and Samsung amongst others – gave away the code to developers for free in the hope that it would help speed up the pace of improvements. Any organisation or individual can now use and modify it.

The software in the N8 allows the phone to have multi-touch and multi-tasking, meaning more than one application can be open at any one time.

The device will be Nokia’s flagship smartphone. It can be plugged into home theatres and supports surround sound as well as high-quality video.

Social networks, such as Twitter and Facebook, can be displayed on the home screen in a single application.

Lee Williams, executive director of the Symbian Foundation, said he was “stoked” that Nokia had chosen to use the operating system on its phone.

BBC News article

The Nokia N8 will ship in the third quarter of this year, 2010. Hopefully the improved software will bring advantages both for its end-users, and the software ‘app’ and web application developers.