Symbian signs Siemens and opens source code

Cocks a snoop at Microsoft...

Cocks a snoop at Microsoft...

Mobile phone maker Siemens has joined the Symbian partnership as the mobile phone operating system opens its source code to third parties. Siemens has confirmed that it will use the Symbian platform for its forthcoming SmartPhone products. The company has bought a five per cent stake in the joint venture for £14.25m, joining Ericsson, Motorola, Matsushita, Nokia, and Sony Ericsson as shareholders. Samsung is now the largest phone maker without a seat on the Symbian board, though it has licenced Symbian software. Speculation will now mount about whether the Korean giant will come on board. The news will come as a blow to Microsoft, which has been looking for a major handset manufacturer to commit to its rival to the Symbian platform, SmartPhone 2002, formerly named Stinger. The Symbian-Siemens deal does not explicitly rule out Microsoft, but it firmly establishes Symbian as the German handset maker's platform of choice. The deal cements an announcement made by Siemens last February that it would build smart phones based on the Symbian platform. Symbian also announced that it will be opening the source code of its operating system to a range of technology partners under the "Symbian Platinum Program". ARM, Intel, and Texas Instruments are among the companies that have already signed up to the deal.