Linux Phone Standards Forum Reveals Specifications, Roadmap

Demonstrating the growing momentum of the mobile Linux market, The Linux Phone Standards (LiPS) Forum announced the publication of specifications, that are part of LiPS Release 1.0, whose complete delivery is planned by the end of 2007. In addition, LiPS unveiled a roadmap of additional specification areas to be developed through 2008. These LiPS Release 1.0 specifications documents represent the first public deliverables from working group activities since LiPS’ founding, and will help to improve interoperability across the Linux-based mobile telephony ecosystem – from software stack suppliers to mobile device OEMs to regional and global wireless operators.

The specifications published include the following: LiPS Reference Model, Address Book and Voice Call Enabler, and User Interface Services (Widget sets, Key Navigation and Text Input Method APIs– based on GTK). Before the end of 2007, the LiPS Forum will finalize the remaining elements of LiPS Release 1.0 by adding specifications relating to Telephony, Messaging, Calendar, IM, Presence and additional User Interface Services API specifications.

The emerging LiPS standards offer a range of benefits to the Linux-based mobile industry, especially in terms of reducing fragmentation, by informing and aligning OEMs, ISVs, operators and other consortia and standards bodies. “This first set of specifications represents real-world requirements as well as hard work on the part of key mobile ecosystem participants,” noted Haila Wang, president of the LiPS Forum. “Ongoing elaboration and adoption of the LiPS standards specifications will sustain the impressive growth of mobile Linux deployment, enhancing interoperability among devices and software, and streamlining time-to-market and rollout for Linux-based devices and services.”

“LiPS belongs to a new class of industry forums whose standards development model is closer to open source principles, i.e. standardization through public specifications and reference code implementations, rather than just paper-based,” commented Andreas Constantinou, senior analyst with VisionMobile and author of a forthcoming strategic report on mobile open source. “LiPS release 1.0 will be important in helping Linux implementations converge, especially around telephony, PIM and UI services, where fragmentation is stalling otherwise unanimous manufacturer momentum behind mobile Linux.”

Planned for release in 2008 are the Application Framework, Services APIs (e.g., based on IMS), Device Management APIs (based on OMA DM), and additional Enabler APIs (e.g., for multimedia).

About LiPS Forum
The Linux Phone Standards (LiPS) Forum is a consortium of leading industry players formed to standardise the Linux-based services and Application Programming Interfaces (APIs) that most directly influence the development, deployment and interoperability of applications and user-level services.

LiPS Forum was founded in November, 2005 to help accelerate the adoption of Linux in fixed, mobile and converged devices. By standardizing Linux-based services and Application Programming Interfaces (APIs) that influence the development, deployment and interoperability of applications as well as end-user services, device manufacturers, third party software vendors and operators can increasingly differentiate their offerings from competitors and generate revenue. The LiPS Forum now comprises 20 companies from across the mobile industry ecosystem and around the world.

The founding members of the LiPS Forum are ACCESS, ARM, Cellon International, Esmertec, France Telecom, Orange, Huawei Technologies, MIZI Research, Inc., MontaVista Software, Inc., Open-Plug and VirtualLogix.

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