The OSDL on Monday launched the Mobile Linux Initiative, an effort to accelerate adoption of Linux in mobile phones–one of the fastest growing consumer device segments.
Linux is already among the top three OSes in “converged” mobile phones, according to industry analysts, and has shipped in Motorola handsets since 2003.
The OSDL (Open Source Development Labs), which employs Linux creator Linus Torvalds and strives to be the “center of gravity” for Linux, has long been rumored to have an embedded Linux project in the works.
The organization last summer hired embedded expert Bill Weinberg, and more recently, took over stewardship of the Embedded Linux Platform Specification following the demise of the ELC (Embedded Linux Consortium).
OSDL CEO Stuart Cohen said in April that the organization would get involved with embedded given enough member interest.
And indeed, Linux has turned out to be hugely interesting to mobile phone vendors, many of whom already belong to the OSDL because of its Carrier Grade Linux initiative.
The OSDL cites research from market researcher Ovum stating that worldwide mobile phone sales grew 31 percent in 2004, and that more than 2.8 billion phones are expected to be in use by 2009.