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Symbian – An Intro

Symbian is an open source operating system and software platform, which is designed for Smartphones and is retained by Nokia. It was originally developed by Symbian Ltd, which was a software development and licensing company that was established on June 24, 1998 as a partnership between Psion, Ericsson, Motorola, and Nokia. However, Nokia completely acquired the Symbian Ltd. in April 2009 and a new non-profit organization, Symbian Foundation, was established. However, Nokia’s Symbian professional services department, which was not transferred to the Symbian Foundation, was sold to the Accenture consulting company on July 18, 2009.

The objective for developing the OS was to distribute the source code for the complete Symbian platform in the OSI (Open Source Initiative) and FSF (Free Software Foundation)-approved EPL (Eclipse Public License). The source code was published on February 4, 2010, which was reported as the largest codebase transitioned in the history of open source by the Software Foundation. However, in November 2010, the Software Foundation stated that because of a lack of support from funding members, it would transition to a licensing-only organization.

Road to Symbian OS

EPOC – It is a family of graphical operating system, which was developed by Psion for portable devices.

EPOC16 – It was a 16-bit pre-emptive (act of temporarily interrupting a task) multitasking OS, designed to be delivered in ROM and was written in Intel 8086 assembly language and C. MC200 and MC400 were the first EPOC16 devices, which was shipped in 1989.

EPOC32 – A pre-emptive multitasking operating system, which was originally developed for the ARM-family processors that include ARM7, ARM9, Strong ARM and Intel’s XScale processor. The first release was appeared on the Psion Series 5 ROM v1.0 in the year 1997. Later on, there were five releases that appeared on ROM v1.1, Revo/Revo Plus, Psion Series 7 and Psion Series 5mx. It was written in C++.

Symbian OS 6.0 and 6.1
EPOC32 was sometime referred as EPOC, therefore to avoid confusion, it was renamed Symbian. It was also referred as ER6, which was visualized as the base for a new range of Smartphones. Nokia 9210 communicator was the first Symbian phone, released in June 2001.

Two DFRDs (Device Family Reference Design), Quartz and Crystal, were blended with Ericsson’s Ronneby design that became the source for the UIQ (User Interface Quartz) design. It reached the market as the Nokia 80 Series UI. Later, DFRDs were Ruby, Sapphire and Emerald that evolves into the Pearl DFD and finally to the Nokia Series 60 UI. Nokia 7650 Smartphone was the first phone, which was featuring Symbian OS 6.1 and built-in camera with VGA having a 640 x 480 resolution.

Symbian OS 7.0 and 7.0s
A very important release that was having all contemporary UIs, which includes UIQ, Series 80, Series 90.Series 60, as well as several FOMA phones in Japans and Siemens. It was first shipped in the year 2003, where one million of Smartphones were shipped.

After 2003

  1. Symbian OS 8.0 – It was first distributed in the year 2004 and was having two different kernels, EKA1 and EKA2.
  2. Symbian OS 8.1 – It was an improved version of 8.0. The first Smartphone that was running on Symbian OS 8.1 was Nokia N90, which was the first Nokia’s N Series phone and released in 2005.
  3. Symbian OS 9 – It was released for internal Symbian purposes only.
  4. Symbian OS 9.1 – It was released in early 2005, which was having many security related features. All the S60 platform 3rd edition phones are running on OS 9.1.
  5. Symbian OS 9.2 – It was released in first quarter of the year 2006, which was having support for OMA (Open Mobile Alliance) Device Management. Nokia 5700, Nokia N81, Nokia N82, Nokia N95, Nokia E90, and Nokia E71 are featuring Symbian OS 9.2.
  6. Symbian OS 9.3 – It was released on July 12, 2006 with an improved memory management and support for Wi-Fi 802.11 and HSPA technologies. There are many phones running on this OS like Nokia 5320 Xpress Music, Nokia E75, Nokia E52, Nokia N79, Nokia N96, etc.
  7. Symbian OS 9.4 – It was announced in March 2007 and provides the concept of demand paging. The release was also known as S60 5th Edition and was used as the basis for Symbian 1 platform release.
  8. Symbian OS 9.5 – It was announced on March 26, 2007 and was having a native support for mobile TV broadcasts.

After Symbian OS 9.5, Symbian Foundation came into the existence in the year 2009 with an objective to distribute the source code of entire Symbian platform under the OSI and OSF-approved EPL.

  • Symbian History

    Symbian 1

    Symbian 1 was announced in March 2007 and formed the basis for the Symbian platform. It incorporated the Symbian operating system and Series 60 5th edition that was built on Symbian OS 9.4.

  • Rss feed Symbian^ 2 – History

    Symbian^2 was the first open source Symbian operating system, which was available only to members of Symbian Foundation.

  • Blog Archive History of Symbian 3

    Symbian^3 was first unveiled at Mobile World Congress 2010 on February 15, 2010. Symbian^3 is a third version of Symbian operating system

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Death for Symbian!

Can Symbian Fight Back? Does it have anything left in it to give back?. Thats what even we wanna find Out. We will keep you updated in this darkest times for being a Symbian Fan