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No MeeGo smartphones this year

Intel is continuing to pin its hopes on MeeGo, the Linux-based mobile platform developed in conjunction with Nokia, but has warned that smartphones based on the platform won't hit shops until 2011 at the earliest.

Although MeeGo is seeing modest success in other mobile areas, with manufacturers choosing the Linux-based platform based on Nokia's Maemo and Intel's Moblin for devices such as in-car entertainment and satellite navigation systems, the big one for Intel is smartphones.

Having admitted that it missed the boat on smartphone processors, getting MeeGo into the market will significantly bolster demand for the company's x86-based Atom processors - and help put the pressure on industry giant ARM, which currently holds an overwhelming majority share of the smartphone CPU market.

Sadly, Intel's vice president of of software, Doug Fisher, has warned that smartphones based around MeeGo won't even be announce until the first half of 2011 - delaying Intel's assault on the market even further.

Fisher's comments, which came during an interview with Forbes, indicate that the only MeeGo tablet due for launch in 2010 is the WeTab from German-based Neofonie - while no MeeGo-powered smartphones will be launched this year at all.

It's a blow for the company, and for fans of the platform who had watched its development as Moblin and subsequent merger with Nokia's proven Maemo platform with interest - and represents another roadblock in the company's attempts to get its Atom processors taken seriously in the smartphone market.