OS Watch: Operators Want Their Own OS
Europe's wireless operators have dollar signs in their eyes and now they are eyeing a piece of the mobile operating system action. According to a French publication, Orange (NYSE: FTE)-Orange France CEO Stephane Richard is planning a meeting to discuss development of a joint OS among some of the world top operators.
The meeting, set for next month, will reportedly include Vodafone Group plc (NYSE: VOD), Telefónica SA (NYSE: TEF), and T-Mobile US Inc. parent company Deutsche Telekom AG (NYSE: DT). Richards told the French pub that OSs were the Trojan horse that let Apple Inc. (Nasdaq: AAPL) and Google (Nasdaq: GOOG) establish their own customer relationships, cutting the operators out. With nearly 1 billion subscribers between them, they want back in.
"We do not want to be followers but take the reins in innovation," Richards told Le Figaro, according to a translation.
The partnership could come in the form of a joint venture, like the Wholesale Application Community, the operators' attempt to stay relevant in the app store game, or a common apps development unit. (See Operators Have a WAC at Apps .)
The site came to this conclusion after attending AppNation's conference, at which execs bemoaned Android for being complicated, hard to make money off of, and fragmented to a fault. Instead, they are having their in-house developers churn out iPhone apps and could be missing out on the Android opportunity, Android Guys says.
What's interesting about the purchase is that its aimed at updating MotoBlur, Moto's social networking-inspired UI that Mobility CEO Sanjay Jha said it would no longer focus on. He said the company couldn’t communicate its value proposition on 30-second commercial slots, but -- with the acquisition -- it doesn't seem ready to cede the UI space to Google and its frequent Android OS updates either.
HTC says the new UI add-on will boot faster, allow streaming media to other devices, display maps faster, and support DLNA. In an effort to untangle its identify from Google, the company also stressed that Sense is more than an Android skin; it's a complete software stack. Oh, and they are not Google phones, they are HTC phones!
— Sarah Reedy, Senior Reporter, Light Reading Mobile