The latest Series 60 pact also comes on the heels of word from Microsoft that it will release its Windows Powered Smartphone 2002 software "any day now".
The Microsoft smart phone software has been somewhat less than smart. The software has had problems operating with hardware in GPRS phones, which has caused delays and raised questions about whether Microsoft will be able to compete effectively in the handset software market.
Meanwhile, Symbian has garnered substantial industry backing. The private independent software licensing company is jointly owned by Ericsson, Sony Ericsson Mobile Communications, Nokia, Matsushita - best known for its Panasonic consumer brand - Psion, Siemens and Motorola.
The company has made a steady stream of announcements regarding support of the open standards Symbian OS, which provides a common software platform for the manufacturers that support it. This decreases costs for developers that want to create applications for multiple handset makers and helps interoperability, Symbian backers claimed.
Series 60 is designed for Symbian OS-based multimedia handsets with colour screens, key telephony, personal information management applications, a browser and messaging.