Let’s go MeeGo: open-source OS is on track for its comeback *updated*

Jolla MeeGoIn July, ambitious Finnish startup Jolla announced it had adopted the abandoned — by Nokia, at least — operating system MeeGo, and would be designing and developing new smartphones based around it.

Jolla’s seriousness was proven by the members of its team, the majority of whom worked on MeeGo with Nokia, and therefore were both personally and professionally attached to the project from the start. MeeGo has plenty of fans around the world too, thanks primarily to the Nokia N9, the one and so-far only MeeGo smartphone to be released.

That could all change very soon though, as Jolla has announced that it has raised 200 million euros/$260 million in funding, and that its first smartphone is almost ready for its public debut.

Details on the funding are sketchy, with Jolla saying only that it has formed an alliance with “leading players in the industry,” and that a data center to host the OS’s cloud services and infrastructure will be setup through Cyberport in Hong Kong. This is an important point, as Jolla plans to aggressively target the Asian and Chinese market, calling China a “game changer in the technology industry,” adding how it wants to create the “third smartphone ecosystem in China,” after Android and iOS.

Jolla’s MeeGo OS has a codename too, Sailfish, and it will make its first appearance very soon. Jussi Hurmola, Jolla’s CEO, called the OS “more open than Google Android regarding apps and service development,” and said in a tweet that now the ecosystem support system is in place, the company “is very close to announce the date for the device launch.” Speaking to Lightreading.com, Hurmola said that the launch dates for the hardware would be decided later this week.

International availability promised

International fans of MeeGo shouldn’t despair at this apparent focus on Asia, as a tweet from Jolla’s official Twitter account stated that Sailfish is “definitely not for China only.”

As for the first phone, if Jolla listens to those who voted in its poll to find out the preferred form factor for the debut device, it’ll be a touchscreen QWERTY slider. Of the just over 3,000 people who voted, 47-percent chose it, despite — or perhaps because of — the design having fallen from mainstream grace over the past few years. The phone announced is almost certainly going to be a pre-release device though, as Sailboat isn’t going to be available for licensing until early 2013.

Speculating on whether Jolla has a meaningful future ahead of it is almost impossible at this stage, particularly without a look at the Sailboat OS and the phone on which it will first appear. Concentrating on rapidly developing markets — in this case China — is a solid tactic, and something which other companies looking to re-invent themselves are also doing.

Competition is fierce though, with ZTE already adopting Mozilla’s Firefox OS, and the Alibaba Group pledging to invest $200 million per month into its Aliyun mobile OS. Jolla has certainly got some hard work ahead if it wants that coveted third position in the market.


Jolla has announced via its official Facebook page that we’ll get our first look at the new user interface, and hear details about the app ecosystem and SDK, at the Slush startup conference to be held in Helsinki, Finland on November 21 and November 22 this year.

Product Review

Galaxy Watch Active is the right size, no matter how big or small your wrist is

Launched among a massive array of other new products, the Samsung Galaxy Watch Active could easily have been missed at Galaxy Unpacked 2019 -- which would be unfortunate. This is a sensibly designed, correctly sized smartwatch suitable for…

The 2-year-old Nokia 6 is now being updated to Android Pie

Android 9.0 Pie has been released. But is your phone getting Android 9.0 Pie, and if so, when? We've done the hard work and asked every device manufacturer to see when their devices would be getting the update.
Product Review

Fascinating Finney phone is crypto in a nutshell: Exciting, but also terrifying

The Sirin Labs Finney phone is to cryptocurrency what the iPhone is to Apple Pay. It facilitates the payment, processing, and exchanging of cryptocurrencies on a smartphone, and surprisingly does it in a user-friendly way.

Need speed? Qualcomm unveils the Snapdragon X55, the world’s fastest 5G modem

Qualcomm is preparing for an even faster future: The silicon giant just unveiled a second generation 5G modem for smartphones, promising blistering download speeds as high as 7Gbps.

Protect your iPhone or iPad with the IPVanish VPN, on sale through February

One of our favorite virtual private networks for iPhones and iPads, IPVanish, is now offering a huge discount on its two-year subscription as part of its 7th-birthday promotion. Read on to find out more about how this VPN works and how you…

Verizon is launching real standards-based 5G in 30 cities in 2019

Verizon is in the midst of a massive 5G rollout. In addition to fixed 5G service, it will also begin deploying mobile 5G in the coming months. Here's everything you need to know about Verizon's 5G network and when it will be in your town.

Samsung’s wide range of Galaxy products means there’s something for everyone

Samsung launched a host of new products on February 20, with prices ranging from just $35, all the way up to nearly $2,000. This was not by chance, and the company believes it has something for everyone in 2019.

Stay fit and save cash with our top 10 affordable Fitbit alternatives

As much as we love Fitbits, they're rather expensive. If all you want is a simple activity tracker, however, then check out these great cheap Fitbit alternatives. With offerings from brands like Garmin, you don't need to pay full price.

Samsung Galaxy S10e vs. OnePlus 6T: Can the Flagship Killer survive?

The Samsung Galaxy S10e is the new affordable flagship on the block, but at $750, it's $200 more than the OnePlus 6T. Does the Flagship Killer stand a chance against the new generation of flagship devices? Let's take a closer look.

Make some time for the best smartwatch deals for February 2019

Smartwatches make your life easier by sending alerts right on your wrist. Many also provide fitness-tracking features. So if you're ready to take the plunge into wearables and want to save money, read on for the best smartwatch deals.
Product Review

Samsung’s Galaxy Buds are a brilliant combination of value and comfort

With six hours of battery life, an extremely comfortable fit, sweatproofing, and a very palatable price tag, Samsung’s Galaxy Buds are putting all other true wireless earbuds on notice.

Amazon drops a sweet deal on the Kate Spade Scallop smartwatch for women

Unlike many other smartwatches geared toward women, the Kate Spade Scallop offers a more chic and minimalistic look. With this Amazon sale going on right now, you can get it for $109 off its retail price.

Lyft’s Shared Saver service offers cheaper rides, but you’ll have to walk a little

Lyft has launched a new ride option called Shared Saver that offers cheaper rides if you're willing to walk a little. Shared Saver designates a nearby pick-up point and drops you off a short distance from your final destination.

The 5 best Apple AirPods alternatives for Android, Windows, and iOS devices

Apple AirPods, nice as they are, aren't the only game in town. Other makers are offering their own truly wireless earbuds, and if you're looking to buy a pair of high-end in-ear headphones, we've got the best AirPod alternatives on the…