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Despite Nokia's decision to adopt Microsoft's Windows Phone operating system in its mobile devices while pursuing its joint MeeGo venture with Intel on the side, Intel on Friday re-affirmed its commitment to the open-source MeeGo software platform.
Meanwhile, Intel says it will make an announcement regarding the Linux-based MeeGo OS at an event in Barcelona, and said that its strategy in the mobile market in general has not changed, as Nokia is just one of its many partners in that space.
"While we are disappointed with Nokia’s decision, Intel remains committed to MeeGo and welcome Nokia’s continued contribution to MeeGo open source," an Intel spokesperson told CRN on Friday. "Since day one, our strategy has always been to provide choice when it comes to operating systems, a strategy that includes Windows, Android, and MeeGo. This is not changing."
Furthermore, Intel said the open-source MeeGo OS will come to market inside a variety of form factor devices including net books and tablets as well as smart phones.
"I think it’s important to note, MeeGo is not just a phone OS, it supports multiple devices," Intel's spokesperson said. "And we’re seeing momentum across multiple segments -- automotive systems, netbooks, tablets, set-top boxes and our Intel silicon will be in a phone that ships this year."
First, Intel will need to convince mobile device manufacturers to adopt the platform despite the setback Nokia's decision represents. In addition to moving away from MeeGo as the center of its mobile strategy, Nokia is leading an organizational shakeup that, according to a report from Business Insider on Friday, includes the departure of Alberto Torres, EVP of MeeGo Computers, Mobile Solutions, Nokia's top executive in charge of the platform.
Nokia has reportedly moved away from its original plans to develop several MeeGo devices in favor of a single MeeGo-based product launch later this year. Reuters reported on Wednesday that Nokia had discontinued the development of a MeeGo smartphone device it originally planned to launch this year.
According to several online reports last month, Nokia's upcoming MeeGo-based N9 smartphone featuries a dual-core 1.2 GHz Intel Atom CPU, with a 12-megapixel camera and support for LTE connectivity, to be unveiled next week at Mobile World Congress 2011.
Those plans may now be on hold. The report from Reuters on Wednesday cited two industry insiders as well as a leaked internal Nokia memo in which CEO Stephen Elop reportedly compared Nokia's prolonged anticipation for MeeGo to standing on a burning oil platform trying to decide whether to jump.