MeeGo

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This article is about the mobile operating system. For other uses, see Meego.
MeeGo
MeeGo logo.svg
Notebook Edition
MeeGo's netbook user interface
Company / developer Nokia, The Linux Foundation
OS family Unix-like
Working state Terminated in favor of Tizen and Sailfish OS
Source model Open source
Initial release 26 May 2010 (2010-05-26)
Latest release 1.2.0.10 / 12 July 2012; 2 years ago (2012-07-12)
Marketing target Mobile
Package manager RPM Package Manager
Platforms ARM and x86
Kernel type Monolithic (Linux kernel)
Default user interface Several GUIs, see below
License Various, see below
Official website meego.com

MeeGo was a Linux kernel-based free mobile operating system project resulting from the fusion of Intel's Moblin and Nokia's Maemo operating systems.[1] Primarily targeted at mobile devices and information appliances in the consumer electronics market, MeeGo was designed to act as an operating system for hardware platforms such as netbooks, entry-level desktops, nettops, tablet computers, mobile computing and communications devices, in-vehicle infotainment devices, SmartTV / ConnectedTV, IPTV-boxes, smart phones, and other embedded systems.[2] MeeGo is currently hosted by the Linux Foundation.[3]

The Linux Foundation canceled MeeGo in September 2011 in favor of Tizen.[4] A new Finnish start-up, Jolla, picked up MeeGo’s community-driven successor Mer,[5] to develop a new operating system: Sailfish OS, and launched a smartphone Jolla Phone at the end of 2013.[6]

History[edit]

MeeGo was first announced at Mobile World Congress in February 2010 by Intel and Nokia in a joint press conference. The stated aim is to merge the efforts of Intel's Moblin and Nokia's Maemo former projects into one new common project. According to Intel, MeeGo was developed because Microsoft did not offer comprehensive Windows 7 support for the Atom processor.[7] Aminocom and Novell also play a large part in the MeeGo effort, working with the Linux Foundation on their build infrastructure and official MeeGo products. Amino was responsible for extending MeeGo to TV devices,[8] while Novell is increasingly introducing technology that was originally developed for openSUSE, (including Open Build Service, ZYpp for package management, and other system management tools).[2][9] In November 2010, AMD also joined the alliance of companies that were actively developing MeeGo.[10]

Harmattan, originally slated to become Maemo 6, is now considered to be a MeeGo instance (though not a MeeGo product), and Nokia is giving up the Maemo branding for Harmattan on the Nokia N9 and beyond (Maemo 5, aka Fremantle, and previous versions will still be referred to as Maemo).[11]

On 27 September 2011, it was announced by Intel employee Imad Sousou that in collaboration with Samsung MeeGo will be replaced by Tizen during 2012.[4][12][13][14][15][16]

Community developers from the Mer project however plan to continue MeeGo without Intel and Nokia. So far it is not clear whether they will be allowed to continue to use the MeeGo trademark.[17][18][19]

Overview[edit]

MeeGo is intended to run on a variety of hardware platforms including hand-helds, in-car devices, netbooks and televisions.[20] All platforms share the MeeGo core, with different “User Experience” ("UX") layers for each type of device.

System requirements[edit]

MeeGo provides support for both ARM and Intel x86 processors with SSSE3 enabled[21] and uses btrfs as the default file system.[22]

User interfaces[edit]

Screenshot of MeeGo’s Netbook UX

Within the MeeGo project there are several graphical user interfaces – internally called User Experiences ("UX").

Netbook[edit]

The Netbook UX is a continuation of the Moblin interface. It is written using the Clutter-based Mx toolkit, and uses the Mutter window manager.

Samsung Netbook NP-N100 use MeeGo for its operating system.[23]

MeeGo’s netbook version uses several Linux applications in the background, such as Evolution (Email, calendar), Empathy (instant messaging), Gwibber (microblogging), Chromium (web browser), and Banshee (multimedia player), all integrated into the graphical user interface.

Handset[edit]

Handset UX from MeeGo 1.1 "Day 1"

The Handset UX is based on Qt, but GTK+ and Clutter will be included to provide compatibility for Moblin applications.[21] To support the hundreds of Hildon-based Maemo applications, users have to install the Hildon library ported by the maemo.org community. Depending on the device, applications will be provided from either the Intel AppUp or the Nokia Ovi digital software distribution systems.[24]

The MeeGo Handset UX’s "Day 1" prerelease was on 30 June 2010. The preview was initially available for the Aava Mobile Intel Moorestown platform, and a ‘kickstart’ file provided for developers to build an image for the Nokia N900.[25][26]

Smartphone[edit]

MeeGo OS v1.2 "Harmattan" is used in Nokia N9 and N950 phones.

Tablet[edit]

MeeGo’s Tablet UX as a pre-alpha version

Intel demonstrated the Tablet UX on a Moorestown-based tablet PC at COMPUTEX Taipei in early June 2010.

Since then, some information appeared on MeeGo website indicating there will be a Tablet UX part of the MeeGo project, but it is not known if this UX will be the one demonstrated by Intel. This Tablet UX will be fully free like the rest of the MeeGo project and will be coded with Qt and the MeeGo Touch Framework.[27] Intel has revealed interest in combining Qt with Wayland instead of X11 in MeeGo Touch in order to utilize the latest graphics technologies supported by Linux kernel, which should improve user experiences and reduce system complexity.[28][29]

Minimum hardware requirements are currently unknown.

The WeTab runs MeeGo with a custom user interface and has been available since September 2010.[30]

In-Vehicle infotainment[edit]

MeeGo’s IVI UX as shipped with MeeGo 1.1

The GENIVI Alliance, a consortium of several car makers and their industry partners, uses Moblin with Qt as base for its 'GENIVI 1.0 Reference Platform' for In-Vehicle Infotainment (IVI) and automotive navigation system as a uniformed mobile computing platform. Graham Smethurst of GENIVI Alliance and BMW Group announced in April 2010 the switch from Moblin to MeeGo.[31][32]

Smart TV[edit]

Intel is planning on developing a version of MeeGo for IPTV set top boxes.[33]

Licensing[edit]

The MeeGo framework consists of a wide variety of original and upstream components, all of which are licensed under licenses certified by the Free Initiative (such as the GNU General Public License). In order to allow hardware vendors to personalize their device's user experiences, the project's license policy requires that MeeGo's reference User Experience subsystems be licensed under a Permissive free software license – except for libraries that extend MeeGo API's (which were licensed under the GNU Lesser General Public License to help discourage fragmentation), or applications (which can be licensed separately).[34]

Technical foundations[edit]

Core OS[edit]

The MeeGo Core operating system is a Linux distribution, drawing on[vague] Nokia’s Debian-based Maemo and Intel’s Fedora-based Moblin.[35] MeeGo is one of the first Linux distributions to use the Btrfs file system as default, and uses RPM repositories.

Additional frameworks[edit]

Software development[edit]

The officially endorsed way to develop MeeGo applications is to use the Qt framework and Qt Creator as the development environment, but writing GTK applications is also supported.[36]

openSUSE’s Build Service is used to compile the applications.[37]

API[edit]

According to the last available specification the API consists of:

  • Qt 4.7 [Qt47]
  • Qt Mobility 1.0 [QtMob]
  • OpenGL ES 2.0 [OGLES][38]

Derivatives[edit]

MeeGo and its related mobile operating systems

As with Moblin before, MeeGo also serves as a technology pool that software vendors can access to build their products from.

MeeGo/Harmattan[edit]

Even though MeeGo was initiated as collaboration between Nokia and Intel, the collaboration was formed when Nokia was already developing the next incarnation of its Maemo Linux distribution. As a result, the Maemo 6 base operating system was kept intact while the Handset UX was shared, with the name changed to "MeeGo/Harmattan".[11]

On 21 June 2011, Nokia announced its first MeeGo/Harmattan smartphone device, Nokia N9.[39]

Mer[edit]

The original Mer project was a free re-implementation of Maemo, ported to the Nokia Internet Tablet N800. When MeeGo first appeared this work was discontinued and the development effort went to MeeGo.

After both Nokia and then Intel abandoned MeeGo, the Mer project was revived and continued to develop the MeeGo codebase and tools. It is now being developed in the open by a meritocratic community. Mer provides a Core capable of running various UXs developed by various other projects, and will include maintained application development APIs, such as Qt, EFL, and HTML5/WAC.

Some of the former MeeGo user interface were already ported to run on top of Mer, such as the handset reference UX, now called Nemo Mobile. There are also a couple of new tablet UXes available, such as Cordia and Plasma Active. Mer is considered to be the legitimate successor of Meego, as the other follow-up project Tizen (see below) changed the APIs fundamentally.

Nemo Mobile[edit]

Nemo Mobile is a community driven operating system incorporating Mer targeted at mobile phones and tablet.

Sailfish OS[edit]

Sailfish OS is an operating system developed by the Finnish startup Jolla. It also incorporates Mer. After Nokia abandoned their participation in the MeeGo project, the directors and core professionals from Nokia's N9 team left the company and together formed Jolla, to bring MeeGo back into the market mainstream. This effort eventually resulted in the creation of the Sailfish OS. The Sailfish OS and the Sailfish OS SDK are based on the core and the tools of the Mer core distribution,[40] which is a revival of the core of the MeeGo project[41] (a meritocracy-governed and managed successor of the MeeGo OS, but without its own Graphical User Interface and system kernel). Sailfish includes a multi-tasking user interface that Jolla intends to use to differentiate its smartphones from others and as a competitive advantage against devices that run Google's Android or Apple's iOS.[42] Among other things, the Sailfish OS is characterised by:

  • can be used with a wide range of devices in the same way as MeeGo
  • Jolla continues to use the MeeGo APIs (via Mer), which consists of:
    • Qt 4.7 [Qt47]
    • Qt Mobility 1.0 [QtMob]
    • OpenGL ES 2.0 [OGLES][38]
    • updated version, like Qt 5.0 are or will be used in/via Mer core;
  • an in-house Jolla GUI (successor of swipe UI) for smartphone devices;
  • uses QML, Qt and HTML5;
  • thanks to Mer, the core can run on various hardware like Intel, ARM and any other which has a kernel able to work with the Mer core;
  • open source, except for some of Jolla's UI elements. Those interested in further development can become involved through the Mer project or the Sailfish Alliance or Jolla;
  • Jolla, i.e. the Sailfish team, is an active contributor to the Mer project

Tizen[edit]

Although Tizen was initially announced as a continuation of the MeeGo effort, there is little shared effort and architecture between these projects, since Tizen inherited much more from Samsung's LiMo than from MeeGo. As most of the Tizen work is happening behind closed doors and is done by Intel and Samsung engineers, the people involved in the former MeeGo open source project continued their work under Mer and projects associated with it. Because Tizen does not use the Qt framework,[43] which is the core part of Meego's API (see above), Tizen cannot technically be considered to be a derivate of MeeGo.

SUSE and Smeegol Linux[edit]

On 1 June 2010, Novell announced that they would ship a SUSE Linux incarnation with MeeGo’s Netbook UX (MeeGo User Experience) graphical user interface.[44]

A MeeGo-based Linux distribution with this user interface is already available from openSUSE's Goblin Team under the name Smeegol Linux, this project combines MeeGo with openSUSE to get a new netbook-designed Linux distribution. What makes Smeegol Linux unique when compared to the upstream MeeGo or openSUSE is that this distribution is at its core based on openSUSE but has the MeeGo User Experience as well as a few other changes such as adding the Mono-based Banshee media player, NetworkManager-powered network configuration, a newer version of Evolution Express, and more. Any end-users can also build their own customized Smeegol Linux OS using SUSE Studio.[9][45]

Fedora[edit]

Fedora 14 contains a selection of software from the MeeGo project.[46]

Linpus[edit]

Linpus Technologies is working on bringing their services on top of MeeGo Netbook and MeeGo Tablet.[47][48]

Splashtop[edit]

The latest version of the instant-on OS Splashtop-platform (by Splashtop Inc. which was previously named DeviceVM Inc.) is compliant with MeeGo, and future version of Splashtop will be based on MeeGo and will be available for commercial use in the first half of 2011.[49][50]

Release schedule[edit]

It was announced at the Intel Developer Forum 2010 that MeeGo would follow a six-month release schedule. Version 1.0 for Atom netbooks and a code drop for the Nokia N900 became available for download as of Wednesday, 26 May 2010.

Version Kernel version Release date Notes Devices supported (netbooks) Devices supported (handsets) Codename
1.0 2.6.33[51] 26 May 2010[52] Primarily a Netbook release; only a code drop was released for mobile devices (the Nokia N900). Asus EeePC 901, 1000H, 1001P, 1005HA, 1005PE, 1008HA,X101, Eeetop ET1602, Dell mini10v, Inspiron Mini 1012, Acer Aspire One D250, AO532-21S, Revo GN40, Aspire 5740-6025, Lenovo S10, MSI U100, U130, AE1900, HP mini 210-1044, Toshiba NB302. Nokia N900 (No handset UX). Arlington
1.0.1 2.6.33.5[53] July 2010[53] Update to MeeGo 1.0; Kernel updated to 2.6.33.5, USB device loading time improved, improved 3D performance, browser enhancements, resolved multiple e-mail client issue, enhanced netbook window manager, improved visuals, full support for GNOME proxy configuration in the media player, more control over DNS settings.[53] All Netbooks supported by MeeGo 1.0; see above. None Boston
1.0.2 2.6.33.5[54] 9 August 2010[54] Update to MeeGo 1.0; X-Server Update, Connection Manager Update, Package Manager UI Update, Perl Update and several more.[54] All Netbooks supported by MeeGo 1.0; see above. None Cupertino
1.0.3 2.6.33.5[55] 10 September 2010[55] Update to MeeGo 1.0; several Updates, e.g. Chromium browser, Connection Manager[55] All Netbooks supported by MeeGo 1.0; see above. None Dallas
1.0.4 2.6.33.5[56] 12 October 2010[56] Update to MeeGo 1.0; several security updates, better support for Lenovo S10-3, ...[56] All Netbooks supported by MeeGo 1.0; see above. None Emeryville
1.0.5 Unknown[56] 28 November 2010[56] MeeGo core update.[57] All Netbooks supported by MeeGo 1.0; see above. None Fairbanks
1.0.6 Unknown[56] 4 January 2011[56] MeeGo core update.[58] All Netbooks supported by MeeGo 1.0; see above. None Georgetown
1.0.7 Unknown[56] 24 February 2011[56] MeeGo Netbook software update.[59] All Netbooks supported by MeeGo 1.0; see above. None Honolulu
1.1 2.6.35[60] 28 October 2010[61] Touch-based devices support proposed with the Handset UX[62] Unknown Aava and Nokia N900 Irvine
1.1.1 2.6.35[63] 28 November 2010[63] Several Fixes and Updates[63] Unknown Aava and Nokia N900 Jefferson
1.1.2 2.6.35[64] 7 January 2011[64] Several security issues fixed, update syncevolution and connman[64] Unknown Knoxville
1.1.3 2.6.35[65] 24 February 2011[65] Fixed many important security issues, enabled all programs to access remote files over network and updated translation[65] Unknown Lakeside
1.1.99 2.6.35[65] 24 February 2011[65] Beta testing of MeeGo 1.2 for Nokia N900 and other handsets.[66] Unknown Mallard
1.2 2.6.37[67] 19 May 2011 Unknown Nokia N950 (developers only) and Nokia N9 Newark
1.3 2.6.37 October 2011 (canceled) Unknown Nokia N950 (developers only) and Nokia N9 Otsego

Project planning

Launch[edit]

In February 2011, Nokia announced a partnership with Microsoft for mobile handsets[68] and the departure of Nokia's MeeGo team manager Alberto Torres,[69] leading to speculation as to Nokia's future participation in MeeGo development or using Windows Phone by Nokia.

In September 2011, Nokia began shipping the first MeeGo smartphone Nokia N9, ahead of the Windows Phone 7 launch expected later this year.[70][71] The first MeeGo-based tablet WeTab was launched in 2010 by Neofonie.

In early July 2012, Nokia's Meego development lead Sotiris Makyrgiannis and other team members left Nokia.[72]

Companies supporting the project[edit]

Company Industry Support for MeeGo Targeted Device
Acer Computer systems and Hardware Iconia M500 tablet will run MeeGo[73] Tablets and Notebooks
AMD Computer systems and Hardware Will contribute Engineering resources to the free MeeGo project[74] Laptops and PCs
Amino Home Entertainment The Amino Freedom Jump and Freedom Media Centre products are based on MeeGo[75] Set Top Box
Asus Computer Systems and Hardware The Asus Eee PC X101 will have a MeeGo operating system option[76] Laptop
Asianux Software The MeeGo version of the Midinux 3.0 tablet is based on Asianux Linux[77] Tablet
basysKom Software Consulting Is working on a MeeGo Tablet User Interface[78] Tablet
Collabora Software Provide Consulting for MeeGo[79] None
CS2C Software They are creating a MeeGo Tablet[80] Tablet
DeviceVM Computer and Software Uses MeeGo for Splash Top PC's[81] PC
EA Mobile Gaming Verbally supports MeeGo and has declared its intention to use it for future mobile games[82] Tablets and smartphones
Gameloft Gaming Verbally supports MeeGo and has declared its intention to use it for future mobile games[82] Tablets and smartphones
GENIVI Alliance Auto Has standardized on MeeGo for auto infotainment (IVI) system.[83] IVI
GM Auto Member of the GENIVI Alliance that has standardized on MeeGo for Automobil Infotainment Systems (IVI)[83] IVI
Hancom Computer Software[82] Plans to spread MeeGo to the Korean market PC and Laptop
Igalia Software Consulting Development of MeeGo and Sponsor of MeeGo at the Dublin 2010 conference[84] From Mobile devices to Desktop
Integrated Computer Solutions Software Consulting Develops custom software for MeeGo device suppliers.[85] Embedded and Mobile devices
Intel Semiconductors Core sponsor and developer of MeeGo Smartphones
Jaguar Land Rover Auto They plan to use MeeGo for their New car Infotainment[86] IVI
Lanedo Software Consulting Software Development of MeeGo and Sponsor of MeeGo at the San Francisco 2011 conference[87] Embedded device to desktops
Linaro Software Optimises MeeGo for high performance on ARM[88] Mobile-devices
Linpus Software OS Created the Linpus Lite Computer with a MeeGo OS[89] Laptops and netbooks
Mandriva Software Industry The Mandriva minis will run on MeeGo[90] PC and laptops
Metasys Computer and Software Uses a MeeGo based operating system[91] Laptop PC
Nokia Telecommunications and Computer Software Nokia had two MeeGo handsets, the N9 and N950. Abandoned MeeGo development in favor of Microsoft's Windows Phone in 2011. Smart Phones
PixArt Software Development Provides an operating system for the Intel Atom Processor[92] Desktop PCs
PSA Peugeot Citroen Auto Manufacturing They plan to use MeeGo for their New car Infotainment[93] IVI
Red Flag Linux OS Plans on incorporating portions of MeeGo (the UI) into their Linux distribution.[94] Tablet and IVI
ST-Ericsson Wireless semiconductor The U8500 Platform will include MeeGo[95] Smart Phones
Tencent Online Service Provider Plans to work on Next gen mobile devices and apps, using MeeGo[96] Smart Phones
TurboLinux Linux OS TurboLinux has expressed its support for MeeGo[82] Smart Phones
Wind River Mobile Software Owned by Intel, plans on porting MeeGo to other platforms.[97] Smart Phones

See also[edit]

References[edit]

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