Good ideas are really only good ideas if they are done in a timely fashion, so it is hard to really get enthused about news which may just have come a little too late...
Symbian has finally gone open source. Whoop, hooray, bring out the party hats. Problem is, this is a full 20 months since Nokia purchased the platform and the master plan was announced. In the time between June 2008 and February 2010 rather. a. lot. has. happened. Still, I've already been nice to Windows 6.5.3 today so let's embrace the positive.
The big news is Symbian truly is open. Unlike Android (Google actually only opens about a third of its code base), Wired reports 100 per cent of Symbian will be free to investigate and fiddle with. Furthermore, Symbian will openly publish its roadmap up to 2011 meaning everyone can get in on the act of shaping the direction the OS will take.
Furthermore, Symbian is an old dog that can learn new tricks since Nokia has been shopping around a radically overhauled version of the platform (pictured) featuring multi-touch technology since December last year. And lastly, it is pretty hard to dismiss the 300m+ Symbian handsets already out there - even if the bright lights of rival platforms may have caught their user's attention.
Still too little, too late? Maybe, but Symbian has a lot going for it and it has done the smart thing... eventually.