Intel sees a bright future in using Linux as a mobile platform because of the small memory and disk footprint it leaves behind. The project initiated by Intel is called Moblin, and some of the sub-projects will be working with the Ubuntu Mobile & Embedded Edition which should be available in October 2007.
Here are a few of the sub-projects that are already underway:
- Network Profile Manager – Let users connect to WLAN and Bluetooth networks.
- Browser – Screen dimensions for these devices range from 800×480 to 1024×600 pixels, so the opportunity for desktop-like web browsing is a big plus. The browser will be based on Firefox, but it will feature a redesigned interface to make it more acceptable for touchscreen devices. Don’t worry…it will still support the installation of extensions!
- Image Capture – Capture, manage, and share pictures and videos using a built-in camera.
- Chat – It will be built using the Telepathy framework, which supports most popular messaging protocols.
- User Interface – The interface looks pretty sweet. Plug-ins can be created to add things like a quick-launch, calendar, application notifiers, and more. Oh, and there will be themes as well!
- Multimedia – You’ll be able to play back your songs and videos, as well as flip through photos. It even has a feature kind of like Cover Flow on iTunes where you can flip through the album covers for your CD’s.
The projects are led by the community, but Intel supplies the hardware to the developers. The hardware comes in the form of Mobile Internet Devices (small mobile devices for consumers) and Ultra Mobile PC’s (slightly larger, but offer a full PC experience).
I’m excited to see what the Moblin project can lead to, and after seeing the Eee PC yesterday I believe that Linux has a strong future in the mobile arena.