Way back when Nokia switched to making Windows Phones, the company abandoned its own small OS project MeeGo, which was a smartphone OS based on Linux. Samsung, who was working on MeeGo with Nokia, attempted to keep the OS alive by merging it with Bada to create Tizen. They have continued working on the project, and while it has been getting better and better, it still doesn’t have any mainstream devices or recognition.
Luckily for those who were fans of Nokia’s Linux OS efforts (including Maemo), a new company has surfaced with the intent of keeping MeeGo alive. Called Jolla Ltd, the company is based in Finland just like Nokia, and apparently has a fairly healthy relationship with Nokia. While it’s not clear exactly how much Nokia is supporting the company, collaboration seems inevitable as the company’s COO Mark Dillon was Principal MeeGo Engineer at Nokia, and most of the company’s staff consists of former Nokia employees.
On the company’s LinkedIn page, there is little more than a quote that says, “MeeGo based smartphones will have a bright, new future. Stay tuned!” Obviously, it is impossible to know exactly what this means, but I think new MeeGo hardware is likely. The Jolla team includes many of those who designed the Nokia N9, and a bright future for MeeGo could hardly be had without new hardware. It is, of course, possible that the team plans on making software devices, but I hope to eventually see some new MeeGo hardware on the market. Nokia’s Maemo devices were some of my first and favorite mobile devices, and the fact that only one piece of MeeGo hardware ever made it to market was quite disappointing. We will have to wait and see if Jolla can put out a compelling project, but even without one it is nice to know that there are some people who are still interested in MeeGo.