Will Sailfish dethrone iOS and Android?
Often the result of a tussle between giants to claim the top spot ends with neither really emerging on top and a third lesser known entity emerging from a place where we were just too busy to look. But if you aren’t looking there doesn’t mean there’s nothing is happening. Everything may have changed since you last looked!
Take for instance Finland, and take for instance, Jolla.
With the tussle between iOS and Android going on innovation on back seat, it was about time that someone does something about it.
Remember Nokia N9? It ran on the MeeGO platform that Nokia subsequently dumped when it changed its strategy to go ahead and build Windows smart phones?
Well, built on the core of the Mer, which is a revival of the MeeGo operating system, we have a brand new contender… Sailfish
And guess what, It can run android apps too!
In fact, built on the heritage of the proven MeeGo technology, all core cellular functionalities like power management and connectivity are inbuilt and optimized in restrained embedded environments.
The UI is built with QML and Qt Quick. This enables fast and easy customization of the UI and further development according to partner specific screens and with fast and easy to use tools. Well I’d say that borders on what can be safely referred to as ‘fascinating’!
Now, the company that is building smart phones on this platform is a Finnish ‘start up’ with its roots in Nokia.
After Nokia abandoned their participation in the MeeGo project, the directors and core professionals from Nokia's N9 team left the company and formed Jolla in an attempt to continue the legacy of the N9 and of course…the MeeGo.
There are rumours that Jolla has entered into a partnership with a leading Chinese phone retailer (D.Phone) and it is also rumoured to have shown a top secret prototype to the latter to seal the deal.
Asia was the strongest market hold of Nokia…which it lost! Now, if Jolla can capture that market and build a successful device on the lines of the N9 (it sold 4 million pieces in the 1st quarter itself), we have something extremely big here!!
What seems to back my belief that Jolla and of course Sailfish may turn out to be a huge force in the market (I’m anticipating Google to begin having night mares pretty soon) is the commitment to keep it simple and beautiful.
- The use of the Application Compatibility Layer to bring the entire Android ecosystem to the device upon using Android apps is a huge plus. This delivers native performance and 0 latencies without draining device resources.
- So this means that Jolla users will instantly gain access to over 500,000 apps and app developers will also gain access to building native apps with the Sailfish SDK.
- One of the interesting features is ‘ The Other Half’ where you can change the back cover of the phone and the theme and interface change to match the color of the cover! Fun thing to do I’d say… neat!
- Also, the interface is pretty different from the one you would have seen… you have the lock screen on top, you scroll down and that’s the notifications, a bit more and it’s the applications, promising to make access faster and simpler.
- The developer mode is also promised soon. It is supposed to give greater access for hacks and modifications!
All in all, the focus is to capitalize on the good things of the MeeGo that the people liked and make other things better; at least that’s what the CEO Jusii Hurmola has to say.
Keeping it fresh and innovative is all that they seem focused on and we’ll basically have to wait and watch to see what it really ‘feels’ like to use it.
As for now, with a Dual Core processor, 8MP camera, 4G enabled, gesture based OS and 16GB storage, the specs look promising although priced at 399 Euros it seems a tad expensive.