Linux Phone Standards Forum steams ahead

Google Android might be stealing the show for now, but Linux's original phone standards platform isn't giving up yet. The group has released its first mobile Linux standard on the 10th of December.

With this release, LiPS enables mobile industry players to achieve basic interoperability for applications and services deployed on Linux-based phones, benefiting Linux-based software stack suppliers, mobile device OEMs and regional and global telecom operators. These specifications include the LiPS Reference Model, Telephony, Messaging, Calendaring and Scheduling, Presence, User Interface Services, Address Book and Voice Call Enablers APIs.

In contrast to recent announcements from other bodies promoting Linux-based mobile software (a clear poke at Google's Android), LiPS output targets interoperability through real open standards and specifications, not de facto acceptance of a single platform implementation.

The principal advantage to real open standards comes from choice of implementation. As with all formal standards, the challenge lies in moving from “paper standards” to creating code and actual devices.

To that end, LiPS Forum members are already building software and equipment that follow the LiPS specifications.

LiPS members and their peers across the mobile ecosystem have the choice of creating their own versions of LiPS-compliant code, of licensing implementations from other LiPS members or third parties, or of leveraging and contributing to open source implementations.

“Standards-based interoperability is crucial to the success of the global telecommunications marketplace,” declared Haila Wang, president of the LiPS Forum. “LiPS is following the clear path blazed by GSM, TCP/IP, WiFi and other standards that enable communications among device types and brands, over multiple operator networks and across regional markets.”