Strategy and Platforms Play


Early 2006 Java platform was becoming very popular among developers, carriers noticed the application business opportunity, so did IBM, Sun, and Google. Microsoft was not getting traction  with their Mobile OS, and I was on charge of Java Strategy.

Nokia and Motorola were the main contributors to MIDP2 API specification, and together with Sun were on the midst of specification for MIDP3.0.  Java brand was quite important at that time, hence TCKs where the means to comply with the Java standard. Not to mention that the next licensing deal multi million and multi year was under negotiation. Amidst this situation I had to orchestrate an action plan for open-sourcing Java, with Apache Harmony as main codebase and IBM and Motorola as strategic partners.

Nokia could not turn the ship around regarding “device fragmentation” with Symbian and fully dedicate resources to an externally-controlled-platform, when inside of Nokia were already 3 platforms competing for management attention (S40/S30, S60 and Internet multimedia tablet S90) but Google had no legacy and was no brainer for them to take the plans from there, start Davlik and Android for that matter.

Nokia decided to leave Java on secondary, later tertiary platform play, only because of the sheer size of the developer community which was bringing carriers a ton of revenue.

The rest is history. The following year Apple released iPhone, yet today we are still witnessing the final resolutions on the Google-Oracle legal battle for Java.

Instead of pushing for Java, Nokia acquired Qt/Trolltec in a move to create “yet another” brand new platform, Meego. This effort culminated few years later on the one single device released to the market, the Nokia N9. Too little, too late.