if you want other companies to manufacture devices with your OS (the Windows mobile vs. the Apple model) today you need:Someone in the comments asked me: "what about MeeGo?"
- to charge zero dollars for your OS
- to make your OS open source and allow your ODMs some freedom to differentiate
- to have a cool OS
Well, if you look at the list above, MeeGo passes #1 and #2 right away.
I have installed MeeGo on a laptop and the OS is really cool (including the pre-installed option to sync with Funambol just above Google ;-) Therefore, they pass #3 as well.
Does it mean they are going to make it?
There is more to an OS to be successful. You need device manufacturers, developers and users. You need all of them to be there. Users bring developers, developers bring users, device manufacturers come if there is traction: if they know there are developers and there will be users.
Who brings the device manufacturers? Intel. They are pushing MeeGo like crazy.
Who brings the users? Nokia. They have a brand in mobile that is not going to disappear that fast (despite what people say). If Nokia has a sexy phone with MeeGo, users will buy it.
Who brings the developers? The Linux Foundation. They are a trusted party in open source. The fact MeeGo is the equivalent of the root of Linux is a big factor.
If you consider all this, you can see a positive spiral developing. With device manufacturers launching MeeGo products because of Intel. With users jumping in because of Nokia. And developers joining in, seeing the traction plus the Linux Foundation stamp.
Yep, I think MeeGo can actually make it.