Nokia announced today that it will buy Symbian Limited. Nokia already owns 48 percent of Symbian shares and will spend an additional EUR264 million to acquire the balance. Symbian is the company responsible for the development of the Symbian OS which can be partnered with user interfaces such as Nokia’s S60 or UIQ from UIQ Technology (a joint venture between Motorola and Sony Ericsson).
Nokia also announced that it will form the Symbian Foundation with a number of partners that include AT&T, LG Electronics, Motorola, Samsung, Sony Ericsson, and others. The foundation will provide partners with a royalty-free license to a standardized operating system and user interface.
The partners will contribute their respective software to the Foundation. Among these are the Symbian and S60 software from Nokia, UIQ from Sony Ericsson and Motorola, and MOAP(S) from NTT DoCoMo.
The Foundation will begin operations in the first half of 2009 once Nokia completes the Symbian acquisition.