Welcome!

Symbian Authors: Jack Newton, Kevin Benedict, Matthew Lobas, Shelly Palmer, RealWire News Distribution

Related Topics: Mobile IoT, Symbian

Mobile IoT: Article

Mobile OS Fragmentation: Better or Worse?

Moving beyond Web-centric applications

In the midst of iPhone mania, Android frenzy, and Symbian going open source, there's been talk about growing fractures and compatibility chaos in the mobile landscape. This growing storm affects not only software developers, but hardware makers as well. With over 30 operating systems for mobile and embedded devices, developers must carefully choose which devices they want to target and which devices, along with their customer base, they must leave behind. Just listing the leading smartphone software stacks only emphasizes the problem: Microsoft's Windows Mobile, Nokia's Symbian (JME and C++), RIM's BlackBerry, LiMo's Embedded Linux, Open Handset Alliance/Google's Android, QUALCOMM's BREW, Apple's iPhone, Sprint's Titan, Sun's JavaFX, Neo's OpenMoko, and an untold number of legacy proprietary operating systems.

It's a growing nightmare to build applications that run on these different operating systems and maintain some degree of compatibility and interoperability. The problem intensifies when you consider applications should ideally span not only phones, but MIDs, UMPCs, cars (telematics), and other embedded and wearable computing devices. Pervasive is the new mobile. A single platform that spans all "Screens of Life" would truly be something to behold.

This cross-platform headache holds true not only for user interface development, but also for writing and accessing services and intelligent information on edge devices. These services, accessible on any node, will open the door to advanced real-time, location-aware applications that are currently envisioned, but not built.

Standards and performance are also key issues. Once you get to the mobile and embedded arena there are no multi-language standards for database access, rules integration, or location determination. Organizations would love to see these options consolidated, but the number of devices and platforms is growing, not shrinking. And employees and customers don't want to be told which smartphone and other devices they can and can't use. They increasingly want to access to applications and information regardless of which screen (phone, car, MID, PC, TV) they're using at the moment.

Friendly Partners or Strange Bedfellows?
The intense competition that's occurring among handset makers, mobile OS vendors, application companies, and network providers make the mobile environment even more interesting. Until recently these groups competed within their own industry, but the lines are beginning to blur.

The handset manufacturers must decide which mobile OSes to ship on their phones. They also have to find ways to cut prices and differentiate their devices from the myriad of outstanding choices in the market today that are growing daily. Furthermore, most manufacturers have ancillary hardware lines, such as set-top boxes and MID devices, that they'd like to manage easily and unify via pervasive applications.

More Stories By Bob DeAnna

Bob DeAnna joined Recursion Software in January 2006 and is responsible for directing product strategy and, most notably, leading the architecture and positioning of Voyager, the company’s intelligent pervasive distributed computing platform. Through his guidance the product has been enhanced to include native support for .NET, CF, Android, RETE-based rules engines, embedded databases, and the ability to run on nearly 20 embedded and mobile device platforms. Bob brings more than 24 years of experience in software architecture, development and mentoring. His expertise is in distributed application frameworks such as JEE, CORBA, .NET and ATMI. Bob holds a Bs in mechanical engineering from Rutgers University and a continuing education degree in C/C++ and Unix Programming from New York University.

Comments (0)

Share your thoughts on this story.

Add your comment
You must be signed in to add a comment. Sign-in | Register

In accordance with our Comment Policy, we encourage comments that are on topic, relevant and to-the-point. We will remove comments that include profanity, personal attacks, racial slurs, threats of violence, or other inappropriate material that violates our Terms and Conditions, and will block users who make repeated violations. We ask all readers to expect diversity of opinion and to treat one another with dignity and respect.


IoT & Smart Cities Stories
DXWordEXPO New York 2018, colocated with CloudEXPO New York 2018 will be held November 11-13, 2018, in New York City and will bring together Cloud Computing, FinTech and Blockchain, Digital Transformation, Big Data, Internet of Things, DevOps, AI, Machine Learning and WebRTC to one location.
Discussions of cloud computing have evolved in recent years from a focus on specific types of cloud, to a world of hybrid cloud, and to a world dominated by the APIs that make today's multi-cloud environments and hybrid clouds possible. In this Power Panel at 17th Cloud Expo, moderated by Conference Chair Roger Strukhoff, panelists addressed the importance of customers being able to use the specific technologies they need, through environments and ecosystems that expose their APIs to make true ...
"Space Monkey by Vivent Smart Home is a product that is a distributed cloud-based edge storage network. Vivent Smart Home, our parent company, is a smart home provider that places a lot of hard drives across homes in North America," explained JT Olds, Director of Engineering, and Brandon Crowfeather, Product Manager, at Vivint Smart Home, in this SYS-CON.tv interview at @ThingsExpo, held Oct 31 – Nov 2, 2017, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA.
We are seeing a major migration of enterprises applications to the cloud. As cloud and business use of real time applications accelerate, legacy networks are no longer able to architecturally support cloud adoption and deliver the performance and security required by highly distributed enterprises. These outdated solutions have become more costly and complicated to implement, install, manage, and maintain.SD-WAN offers unlimited capabilities for accessing the benefits of the cloud and Internet. ...
In an era of historic innovation fueled by unprecedented access to data and technology, the low cost and risk of entering new markets has leveled the playing field for business. Today, any ambitious innovator can easily introduce a new application or product that can reinvent business models and transform the client experience. In their Day 2 Keynote at 19th Cloud Expo, Mercer Rowe, IBM Vice President of Strategic Alliances, and Raejeanne Skillern, Intel Vice President of Data Center Group and G...
Business professionals no longer wonder if they'll migrate to the cloud; it's now a matter of when. The cloud environment has proved to be a major force in transitioning to an agile business model that enables quick decisions and fast implementation that solidify customer relationships. And when the cloud is combined with the power of cognitive computing, it drives innovation and transformation that achieves astounding competitive advantage.
DXWorldEXPO LLC announced today that "IoT Now" was named media sponsor of CloudEXPO | DXWorldEXPO 2018 New York, which will take place on November 11-13, 2018 in New York City, NY. IoT Now explores the evolving opportunities and challenges facing CSPs, and it passes on some lessons learned from those who have taken the first steps in next-gen IoT services.
The current age of digital transformation means that IT organizations must adapt their toolset to cover all digital experiences, beyond just the end users’. Today’s businesses can no longer focus solely on the digital interactions they manage with employees or customers; they must now contend with non-traditional factors. Whether it's the power of brand to make or break a company, the need to monitor across all locations 24/7, or the ability to proactively resolve issues, companies must adapt to...
"IBM is really all in on blockchain. We take a look at sort of the history of blockchain ledger technologies. It started out with bitcoin, Ethereum, and IBM evaluated these particular blockchain technologies and found they were anonymous and permissionless and that many companies were looking for permissioned blockchain," stated René Bostic, Technical VP of the IBM Cloud Unit in North America, in this SYS-CON.tv interview at 21st Cloud Expo, held Oct 31 – Nov 2, 2017, at the Santa Clara Conventi...
Founded in 2000, Chetu Inc. is a global provider of customized software development solutions and IT staff augmentation services for software technology providers. By providing clients with unparalleled niche technology expertise and industry experience, Chetu has become the premiere long-term, back-end software development partner for start-ups, SMBs, and Fortune 500 companies. Chetu is headquartered in Plantation, Florida, with thirteen offices throughout the U.S. and abroad.