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Nokia: Linux Headed To Our Handsets

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Nokia may be famed for its dedication to the Symbian platform but with the threat of Google's open source Android OS on the horizon plans are afoot to diversify things.

According to Reuters, the world's largest handset manufacturer is set to spice things up by bringing the Linux OS seen in its 810 Internet Tablet (below) to a number of its smartphones. "We will expand that range, and we believe that the role of Linux will grow," said Nokia spokesman Kari Tuutti.

In fact Nokia says it has been working on Linux-based handsets for some time now and while it was understandably not prepared to give anything away, it did say the flexibility of the platform is what appeals most. In addition, unlike alternatives such as Microsoft's Windows Mobile software, Linux shares its code freely to encourage widespread development.

Of course Nokia isn't alone in its embrace of Linux, Vodafone, Motorola, NTT DoCoMo, Samsung Electronics, Huawei and LG have all joined Linux alliances in recent years and the platform is seen to be gearing up for an all-out assault on the more established players.

With Apple's shrunken down Mac OS X, Symbian, Windows Mobile, Android, Palm and now Linux all likely to be in the mix come 2009 (ok, maybe not Palm) that sure promises to be one heck of a battle.

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