Symbian exec: We'll keep 50% of smartphone OS market

Having been busy reshaping the company into a provider of open operating systems (OS) for mobile devices, the Symbian Foundation has come out fighting with the bold assertion that it aims to maintain the leading position by retaining a 50 per cent share of the market.

The company, which was acquired by Nokia last year and then instructed to turn itself into an open foundation, has been steadily losing market share to new entrants like Apple and Google. However, David Wood, a technical exec with the company believes it can keep its 50 per cent share of the smartphone space in the short term by "building a vibrant community, to make developers really satisfied."

Wood maintains that 150 firms have already joined the Symbian Foundation, with another 50 expected to sign up shortly. While many of these firms are small developers, ZTE is already a member and Huawei is set to join within months - which could be vital given that both firms are known for their aggressive pricing to win market share, and have the ability to take the Symbian OS into the mass market.

If this becomes a reality, then the Foundation aims to have one billion devices running its operating system in 3-4 years time--a sharp increase from the 250 million handsets it reported as using its OS earlier this year.

Meeting this aggressive target might be troublesome given the number of companies attempting to enter this smartphone segment, and even Wood recognises that the OS market is crowded, "probably too crowded. Everybody sees the potential of this space."

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