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This week saw the Symbian Exchange and Exposition (SEE 2009) take place in London.
The show was unusual in that the Symbian operating system, best known for being the powerhouse behind Nokia's smartphones, is currently being open-sourced and is therefore between two versions that will probably differ greatly.
As much of the proprietary intellectual property in the old Symbian may not carry through to the new version, the Symbian-based phones that appear in 2010 may look very different from those that are available now.
Lee Williams (pictured), chief executive of the Symbian Foundation, said at the event on Tuesday that the new Symbian would be "the world's most advanced OS" for mobile phones.
Near-field communications (NFC) is the short-range wireless technology that is currently most familiar through smartcards, such as London's Oyster travelcard.
NFC allows devices to pair and transmit data through a simple swiping action. Phone manufacturers have long been keen on incorporating such functionality into their devices, in a bid to have handsets replace travelcards and debit cards.
Nonetheless, Symbian's Lee Williams said at SEE that NFC had "the ability to truly form how mobile products and services interact with the world", and promised such functionality would be fundamental to the new Symbian platform.