Five years of Microsoft versus Symbian


Five years of Microsoft versus Symbian

Mobile device platforms are proliferating faster than ever, but we are still no closer to the original vision of a single, universal platform standard.



Back in 1998 it all seemed so simple. Mobile handset technology was about to explode; therefore, to pre-empt any interoperability problems, the industry needed a standardised operating system for the new breed of "smartphones". This would allow developers to write compelling applications for a wide range of devices. There was a brief but exciting tussle between Microsoft and Psion over who would contribute the core technology. Psion's EPOC won, and Symbian - an operating system controlled by a consortium of device manufacturers - was born. Is this the end of story?

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This was first published in March 2003


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