Motorola, Sony Ericsson to share Symbian UI company

Motorola took a 50 percent stake in UIQ, sharing ownership in the Symbian user interface developer with Sony Ericsson.

Motorola took a 50 percent stake in UIQ, a move that is likely a reaction to stepped up competition from the iPhone.

Under the agreement, Motorola and Sony Ericsson Mobile Communications will equally share ownership of UI Holdings, the parent company of Symbian user interface developer UIQ Technology.

Motorola's interest in UIQ could be an effort for the handset maker to produce more user friendly devices in the face of competition from Nokia and Apple, said Gerry Purdy, chief analyst at Frost and Sullivan. UIQ was developed early on as a touch-based user interface. That concept has seen renewed interest since the launch of Apple's iPhone, which has a unique touch screen user interface.

The investment in UIQ could signal that Motorola plans to release more Symbian phones, Purdy said. The announcement could also mean that Motorola hopes to influence the development of UIQ such that the software could become compatible with other operating systems like Linux, he said.

Motorola is better known for its Linux phones than its Symbian handsets. In fact, in 2003 Motorola sold its stake in Symbian, a decision that many in the industry interpreted as a move away from the operating system.

Sony Ericsson and Motorola are inviting other handset makers to either become shareholders of UIQ or license the technology. Historically, UIQ has been used almost exclusively by Sony Ericsson and Motorola.

UIQ competes with Nokia's Series 60 software, a user interface that also runs on Symbian. Both efforts have faced difficulties in enticing other phone makers to license the software because of the conflict of ownership. For instance, some phone makers may be reluctant to license Series 60 software from their competitor, Nokia.

UIQ has its roots in an Ericsson development lab founded in 1998. The lab soon became a part of Symbian and earlier this year Sony Ericsson acquired the company from Symbian.

Join the newsletter!

Or

Sign up to gain exclusive access to email subscriptions, event invitations, competitions, giveaways, and much more.

Membership is free, and your security and privacy remain protected. View our privacy policy before signing up.

Error: Please check your email address.
Keep up with the latest tech news, reviews and previews by subscribing to the Good Gear Guide newsletter.

Nancy Gohring

IDG News Service
Show Comments

Brand Post

Most Popular Reviews

Latest Articles

Resources

PCW Evaluation Team

Emily Tyson

MSI GE63 Raider

If you’re looking to invest in your next work horse laptop for work or home use, you can’t go wrong with the MSI GE63.

Laura Johnston

MSI GS65 Stealth Thin

If you can afford the price tag, it is well worth the money. It out performs any other laptop I have tried for gaming, and the transportable design and incredible display also make it ideal for work.

Andrew Teoh

Brother MFC-L9570CDW Multifunction Printer

Touch screen visibility and operation was great and easy to navigate. Each menu and sub-menu was in an understandable order and category

Louise Coady

Brother MFC-L9570CDW Multifunction Printer

The printer was convenient, produced clear and vibrant images and was very easy to use

Edwina Hargreaves

WD My Cloud Home

I would recommend this device for families and small businesses who want one safe place to store all their important digital content and a way to easily share it with friends, family, business partners, or customers.

Walid Mikhael

Brother QL-820NWB Professional Label Printer

It’s easy to set up, it’s compact and quiet when printing and to top if off, the print quality is excellent. This is hands down the best printer I’ve used for printing labels.

Featured Content

Product Launch Showcase

Latest Jobs

Don’t have an account? Sign up here

Don't have an account? Sign up now

Forgot password?