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Access Shows ALP 3.0 at MWC

Access Linux Platform 3.0Access is exhibiting at the Mobile World Congress this week in Barcelona. The company has been showing off v3.0 of the Access Linux Platform, which was announced last October. Engadget caught a demo of it running on a TI Zoom OMAP34x-II Mobile Development Platform.

ALP v3.0 features a revised UI with new support for "Hollywood-style" graphics, transitions and added support for 2.5 and 3D graphics environments. The new version of ALP also adds Limo support and retains the Garnet OS legacy compatibility layer. ALP has yet to see a consumer release on any shipping mobile hardware.

LiMo Compliance
Access Linux Platform v3.0 delivers on Access' commitment to provide LiMo compliance to help OEMs/ODMs, operators and application developers reduce development requirements and time-to-market for LiMo devices. Furthering its support for the LiMo Foundation and the advancements of mobile Linux innovation, Access has also contributed components to the LiMo Reference Platforms that will further ease the deployment of sophisticated and differentiated LiMo devices. Access' Strategic Contributing Offer (SCO) is a subset of Access Linux Platform v3.0.

Access Linux Platform ALP

"We are pleased to count Access Linux Platform v3.0 as one of the LiMo Compliant products showcased at this year's Mobile World Congress," said Morgan Gillis, executive director of LiMo Foundation. "Access' contributions to the LiMo Platform and the introduction of their LiMo Reference Implementation are greatly appreciated and will accelerate the availability of LiMo further compliant devices."

"ACCESS continues to deliver on its promise to provide a broad range of solutions that are right for today's fast-paced market. We remain committed to setting the standard for mobile Linux devices, and ACCESS Linux Platform v3.0 is the next step in our technology evolution," said Tomihisa Kamada, Co-CEO and president of ACCESS. "The flexibility, modularity and openness of Linux make it ideal for mobile operators to deliver customized services — and our ACCESS Linux Platform v3.0 and ACCESS Linux Platform mini products make this customization easy to develop and market to consumers."

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How are they funded?

zuhmir @ 2/20/2009 10:57:29 AM # Q
There are no devices with ALP!!! how are they making enough money to survive?? especially now when the world goes through a financial crisis....

RE: How are they funded?
Gekko @ 2/20/2009 11:06:16 AM # Q

frequent flier miles and third world bath house investments perhaps?

RE: How are they funded?
LiveFaith @ 2/20/2009 12:34:11 PM # Q
Three Japanese university students, unlimited pizza, and cable TV can get quite a bit done in a year. ALPOs is actually doing pretty decent at following the look of functioning OSes. It's unique to see an extinct species keep hanging around for further viewing.

Unfortunately, for those seeking to hang in the 90s with Palm OS legacy apps, this is probably the most powerful solution. To bad nothing out there actually runs it, unless that Russian superphone ever sees the light of day. The legacy folks are probably going to be saddled with WM, Symbian, Apple, or WebOS hack jobs with Tapwave at the end of the day.

Other than LiMo, why would anyone implement this OS instead of Google?

Pat Horne

RE: How are they funded?
Scotland @ 2/20/2009 2:56:35 PM # Q
Well, I guess they are living off revenue from selling the Netfront browser to feature phone vendors - that's a dying market as smartphones increasingly become the norm.

Pat has it right, though, it's been interesting to see Access keep (mostly) abreast of the smartphone state-of-the-art but still have no hardware. With Google Android taking most of the mindshare for Linux based/open source based mobile OSes, it seems unlikely that Access has much of a chance of establishing itself now. Maybe they should join the Android alliance and port their ALP user interface (if that's possible - shouldn't be impossible given the open source nature of Android) and Netfront browser to it. Access would be able to protect some of their investment, pick up Android applications and developers, while providing Garnet app users a way forward.

Unless they get some handsets circulating soon in a major way, it looks like the window for establishing a new smartphone OS is closing (unless you have something new and cool like Palm does) because there's too many already. The fact that there's 6 major ones - Windows Mobile, iPhone, Symbian, Blackberry, Android and Palm - represents a huge challenge to developers, users, and carriers. Palm itself faces a challenge with Pre/WebOS but at least they control their own hardware, have major carrier partners, and have managed to break out of the "me-too" public perception that's been the norm for new products since the release of iPhone.

RE: How are they funded?
akalefty @ 2/20/2009 4:33:49 PM # Q
that's a dying market as smartphones increasingly become the norm.

It is? That'd be news to us. Our installed base on NetFront alone has grown to close to 750,000,000 installations, total, on close to 1,800 different devices, and far from all of them cell phones: we're in set-top boxes, panel televisions, and even car dashboards.

That's just NetFront. As I keep reminding folks, ALP is just one element in our product line, the mobile space is enormous and by no means settled, and there's plenty of time. We've been around for 25 years this year; we're set to be around for another 25, easy.

(And anyone who thinks that "Android is taking most of the mindshare, etc." reads too many press releases, and doesn't read them carefully enough. The big news at MWC was the general (and ongoing) lack of Android: a single new handset shown (which is very little different from the previous one) from the only company that—with reams of help from Google directly, reportedly—has managed to actually bring an Android device to market so far, and several other already-announced ones getting pushed off later into the year...)

Android's apparently not as easy to work with as they like to make out...

RE: How are they funded?
mikecane @ 2/20/2009 4:56:36 PM # Q
Pre Screens Vs. ACCESS Screens: Rematch
http://prepoint.wordpress.com/2009/02/20/pre-screens-vs-access-screens-rematch/

Look carefully. I didn't notice it until after the post had been published a while and didn't decide to update it because, like, who really cares? But it looks like this new UI has dumped the pull-down menus. That should make Garnet emulation something to see.

And why the hell are these screens never proper 320x480?

RE: How are they funded?
freakout @ 2/20/2009 5:10:59 PM # Q
The fact that there's 6 major ones - Windows Mobile, iPhone, Symbian, Blackberry, Android and Palm - represents a huge challenge to developers, users, and carriers. Palm itself faces a challenge with Pre/WebOS...

I think that's one of the major reasons they decided to go with this whole web-based app approach - rather than try and convince developers they need to learn to code for yet another proprietary platform, they just make apps easily portable from the Internet - which is the universal platform everyone uses.

A native SDK is always an option if Mojo goes down like a lead balloon, but judging from the excitement of devs who've worked with it (see our Pandora and Pivotal interviews), that's not going to be the case...

Tim
I apologise for any and all emoticons that appear in my posts. You may shoot them on sight.
Treo 270 -> Treo 650 -> Treo 680 -> Centro

RE: How are they funded?
akalefty @ 2/20/2009 5:28:16 PM # Q
And why the hell are these screens never proper 320x480?

Probably because the device from which the shots are taken has a screen with dimensions other than QVGA: try 320 x 640. (And since when did QVGA become the "proper" form factor for mobile devices...? I musta missed the memo.)

And that's not, by the way, "the way" that ALP looks. That's a generic look which would be customized to the needs of the device manufacturer and carrier, as we typically do.

RE: How are they funded?
mikecane @ 2/20/2009 6:09:39 PM # Q
Customized: that must be fun for devs to have to redo their code for one brand/model of phone after another - that's if there were any phones actually using it.

Ah, Symbian Mark III.

And oh, the bizarro dimensions of these snaps - provided by Abcess itself - are 480x854. Yeah, that's a generally-used res. Not!

RE: How are they funded?
LiveFaith @ 2/20/2009 7:26:10 PM # Q
** Probably because the device from which the shots are taken has a screen with dimensions other than QVGA: try 320 x 640. (And since when did QVGA become the "proper" form factor for mobile devices...? I musta missed the memo.) **

A wise man once said "It's not wise to throw stones from a glass house". Seeing that "320x480" is not "QVGA", you really may have missed a memo. HVGA (HalfVGA)is 320x480 / 480x320, while 320x240 / 240x320 is QuarterVGA. For devices running Palm OS, the HVGA resolution would be considered "proper" seeing that porting 95% of the existing Palm OS software library over would be much closer to seamless.

You may want to get some plywood. :-)

** would be customized to the needs of the device manufacturer and carrier, as we typically do. **

BTW, I understand a reference design / color scheme / on-board apps and all. But, I'm not sure that using "as we typically do" after the folks around here watched Cobalt 6.0 give way to 6.1 which gave way to ALPOs, which gave way to ALPOs2, which has now given way to ALPOs3 ... and nary a single device available for purchase in all those years. "Typically do" does not cause me to gush with a lot of confidence.

Don't get me wrong, if ALPOs ships then I will be glad and would even consider the device. It's just that I gave up and moved on from that a version or two ago. I would love to be wrong and see legacy Palm OS over Linux make it outta the gate.

Lefty, do you actually work for Access?

Pat Horne

RE: How are they funded?
akalefty @ 2/20/2009 11:37:11 PM # Q
Seeing that "320x480" is not "QVGA"...

Yup, I put a "Q" instead of an "H". Mea culpa, mea maxima culpa. I was on my way out to the movies, which are consistently a lot more entertaining, and provide better value, than anything that happens around here. I was distracted. Write your congressman.

"Typically do" does not cause me to gush with a lot of confidence.

Imagine my devestation. In point of fact-and as I've mentioned repeatedly-we do plenty of exactly the sort of business I describe with a variety of manufacturers, have done so for years. I'm guessing that the generally low level of reading comprehension evident here has somehow continually kept people from missing the fact that our business extends to products, lots of them, beyond ALP...

Lefty, do you actually work for Access?

About four seconds on Google would doubtless provide you with an authoritative answer. Pat, do you actually put any thought into these things before you post 'em?

RE: How are they funded?
ChiA @ 2/21/2009 2:43:57 AM # Q
The big news at MWC was the general (and ongoing) lack of Android

In contrast to the lacking ALP making any news.

a single new handset shown (which is very little different from the previous one) from the only company that—;with reams of help from Google directly, reportedly—;has managed to actually bring an Android device to market so far, and several other already-announced ones getting pushed off later into the year...)

Android's apparently not as easy to work with as they like to make out..

Please remind us - how many handsets use ALP version 1, 2 or 3?

Well if Android's not easy to work with but HTC have managed to release a handset using it, then what does it imply about the lack of interest in ALP?


That's just NetFront. As I keep reminding folks, ALP is just one element in our product line, the mobile space is enormous and by no means settled, and there's plenty of time. We've been around for 25 years this year; we're set to be around for another 25, easy.

I'm sure they had the same sentiment last year in Lehman Brothers...

Just quit with your glib condescending comments here and focus on actually getting your "wunder" ALP OS away from demos in conventions and into products people actually use.

If this task is beyond you then focus on what you can do, which at the moment is this Netfront browser you keep touting, and spare your investors any more heartache during these difficult times.

RE: How are they funded?
akalefty @ 2/21/2009 6:42:56 AM # Q
...spare your investors any more heartache during these difficult times...

Gee, that's really thoughtful of you. Our investors don't seem to be expressing particular dismay, however.

RE: How are they funded?
mikecane @ 2/21/2009 9:18:52 AM # Q
>>>Write your congressman.

What for? They don't know QVGA from a Q-Tip!

Reply to this comment

I'd post a comment here but...

SeldomVisitor @ 2/20/2009 11:04:38 AM # Q
...I can't get the Search function to find my previous comment.

"samsung...samsung...samsung" might be the search string.

This one searched for the hard way will do:

http://www.palminfocenter.com/comments/9695/#149998


Reply to this comment

YES,YES, YES!!!!

Tuckermaclain @ 2/20/2009 12:59:29 PM # Q
Bring it to market!!! LEGACY SUPPORT with updated features!! This is that Palm should have beebn doing. I can't wait to see what DOCOMO and others bring to the table in terms of working models!!

RE: YES,YES, YES!!!!
LiveFaith @ 2/20/2009 1:38:23 PM # Q
Ya know that brings up huge question. Why would NCCD have NOT already released a model running this OS? They are apparently not trying to use an Apple / Palm biz model, but it would seem obvious to jumpstart this stillborn OS with some hardware.

Maybe the Pacific Rim is not a Palm OS stronghold, but if they are depending on legacy Palm OS to completely win the day, then that's hopeless anyway. It would seem that the Linux functionality on a smartfone would be compelling over there where NCCD is so strong. Especially China where Palmsource had bought into.

I just don't get it?

Pat Horne

RE: YES,YES, YES!!!!
mikecane @ 2/20/2009 6:13:11 PM # Q
Didn't PalmSource acquire China Mobile? Hence, didn't Abcess acquire China Mobile when buying PalmSource? Why isn't this thing hitting Chinese phones at all?

Reply to this comment

Nice to see alp still in the news

scstraus2 @ 2/20/2009 5:51:51 PM # Q
I'm surprised there's still news from access, but glad to see, because I don't see any good reason why their palmos layer isn't available in the pre. It's funny to see how dated they look now compared to palm's new offerings now.

Palm Pilot 5000->Palm Pilot Professional->Handspring Visor->Handspring Visor Prism->Handspring Visor Neo->Handspring Treo 180->Handspring Treo 270->Palm Treo 600->Tapwave Zodiac 2->Palm Treo 650->Palm Treo 680->Samsung i780->Palm Pre..!?
RE: Nice to see alp still in the news
hkklife @ 2/20/2009 7:35:48 PM # Q
Dated looking? Yes.

Quite possibly more brutally efficient and usable? Highly likely.



Pilot 1000->Pilot 5000->PalmPilot Pro->IIIe->Vx->m505->T|T->T|T2->T|C->T|T3->T|T5->Zodiac 2->TX->Verizon Treo 700P->Verizon Treo 755p->?

RE: Nice to see alp still in the news
justauser @ 2/21/2009 1:06:20 AM # Q
What's nice to see is a user interface that doesn't look exactly like an iPhone's

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Waiting for ALP

viglactin @ 2/21/2009 5:15:25 PM # Q
Have been a Palm OS since the PAlm V version. Could not wait for a smartphone running ALP with 3G and Palm os 3rd party software compatibility.

I hope there will be a qwerty smartphone soon available here in Asia particualry southeast asia.

Just keep it up, I know there are alot of Palm loyal user who still wants a 3rd party software compatible with palm os.

RE: Waiting for ALP
joad @ 2/22/2009 11:10:57 AM # Q
Agree totally. Ideally ALP offers a firmware flash for Treo 755s and/or other good hardware - I'd pay a hundred bucks for sure.

The Pre looks Pre-tty, but I lose battery life, expandable memory, local backups,legacy OS support for 13 years of apps, and maybe local hotsync and tethering, too.

Keeping my existing phone hardware and accessories, data plan and being out-of-contract would rock! ALPOs has a huge opportunity in those many PalmOS users for which it has never been about the thickness of the phone or the color of the body. For a lot of people over these 13 odd years it's been the simplicity and extensive third party app catalog.

Palm "Preh": as in "eh, where's the microSD and Garnet emulator?"

RE: Waiting for ALP
Tuckermaclain @ 2/24/2009 10:11:10 AM # Q
You took the words out of my mouth.

RE: Waiting for ALP
AdamaDBrown @ 2/24/2009 10:17:07 AM # Q
Folks, the likelihood of ever seeing ALP on real hardware is approaching absolute zero, and even if we do, there's definitely not going to be upgrades for existing devices.

Garnet legacy apps and data are over.

RE: Waiting for ALP
SeldomVisitor @ 2/24/2009 10:33:05 AM # Q
I thought ALP already was in a camera and that Samsung had (strangely) announce "4 Android phones and a Limo-based one, too" coming soon.

Isn't Samsung the one that shelved an ALP phone within the last N time periods? Maybe it's about to come back from the dead.


RE: Waiting for ALP
akalefty @ 2/24/2009 2:11:53 PM # Q
Folks, the likelihood of ever seeing ALP on real hardware is approaching absolute zero...

Got anything to back that up with, or are you simply indulging in free-form editorializing again?

Remember, Adama was the fellow who swore that ALP hadn't even been released, a full year after version 1.0 was announced, and who wouldn't admit that he was wrong until he'd had his nose publicly rubbed in a press release...

RE: Waiting for ALP
Gekko @ 2/24/2009 2:21:39 PM # Q

it's hard to prove a negative, silly.

RE: Waiting for ALP
AdamaDBrown @ 2/24/2009 8:59:14 PM # Q
SV, Samsung was supposed to be brewing up an ALP phone for Orange, but Orange decided they didn't want it and Samsung killed the product.

Lefty, give it up. It's been two years since the fabled "release" you refer to, which was exactly what you said: a press release talking about a toolkit. If you want to define that as "released," go ahead. But if anyone really thinks that major manufacturers are going to choose a two year old no-name OS over Android or Windows at this point, then they're welcome to keep waiting for Cobalt or whatever it's called these days.

RE: Waiting for ALP
akalefty @ 2/25/2009 3:38:07 AM # Q
You're continuing to spin fantasies and present them as fact, Adama. It's a bad habit. I know you didn't get that little fairy tale from either Samsung or Orange.

Making up stories isn't a substitute for actually reporting the facts, Adama. You oughta make up your mind whether you prefer to be a journalist or an author of fiction.

And, again, you're misstating the facts on your prior gaffe: software is "released" when it is available to ship to customers, as ALP had been for a full year at the time you claimed it was still uncompleted.

At that time, I pointed you to that press release-first privately, to absolutely no response, then publicly, at which point you finally grudgingly admitted that perhaps you weren't cognizant of the actual facts. Nor is that the only time I've corrected you on matters that could have been authoritatively settled with perhaps fifteen seconds of research on Google, I've done it several times, both here and on Brighthand.

Frankly, it makes you come off like a lazy, biased guy who can't be bothered to actually do his work.

RE: Waiting for ALP
SeldomVisitor @ 2/25/2009 4:04:30 AM # Q
>> Samsung was supposed to be brewing up an ALP phone for Orange, but
>> Orange decided they didn't want it and Samsung killed the product...
>
> ...It's a bad habit. I know you didn't get that little fairy tale
> from either Samsung or Orange...

http://www.engadgetmobile.com/2008/07/30/linux-based-samsung-i800-gets-canned/

RE: Waiting for ALP
abosco @ 2/25/2009 9:30:40 AM # Q
It doesn't matter whether the software went GM. I don't care. I can't go to AT&T and buy an ALP phone, and that's the important part.

-Bosco
m105 -> NX70v -> NX80v -> iPhone -> iPhone 3G
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