Broadcom joins Linux Mobile Foundation

Leading fabless chip supplier Broadcom Corp has joined the LiMo (Linux Mobile) Foundation as an associate member. The group, originally formed by Motorola Inc., NEC, NTT DoCoMo, Panasonic Mobile Communications, Samsung Electronics Co. Ltd. and Vodafone plc, is chartered with delivering a consistent open-source Linux software platform for mobile phones.

Broadcom said Linux is gaining momentum in mobile phones and that it would work with LiMo Foundation members to address power consumption, size and cost, in an effort to achieve widespread adoption of Linux-based handsets.

"Broadcom's membership in the LiMo Foundation highlights the growing enthusiasm for mobile Linux and the effort to build products within a shared architecture," said Morgan Gilis, executive director of the LiMo Foundation, in a statement issued by Broadcom.

Broadcom is set to gain access to the Foundation's code and participate in working groups developing the smartphone segment. Broadcom's move to join the LiMo Foundation follows the recent expansion of its smart-phone Design Center in Taiwan, which currently focuses on the development of Windows Mobile solutions, and joining the S60 developers' community for Symbian S60 based smart-phones.

"Our membership in the LiMo Foundation highlights our commitment to the expanding opportunities within the Linux mobile environment," said Jim Tran, general manager of Broadcom's mobile communications business, in the same statement.

Nokia, the leading handset manufacturer is a notable absentee from the LiMo Foundation. Nokia, along with other mobile phone companies, is an investor in mobile phone operating system supplier Symbian Ltd.

Broadcom expects its initial Linux-compliant mobile solutions to include the BCM2153 and BCM2820 ICs.