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NewsFactor: Where Are All the Cool Embedded-Linux Gadgets?

May 07, 2003, 09:00 (2 Talkback[s])
(Other stories by Vincent Ryan)
The Linux operating system is on a stealth mission to find its way into the palm of your hand and the heart of your home. Embedded Linux, the stripped-down version of the OS for consumer-electronics devices, is trying to needle its way into set-top boxes, PDAs, wireless access points and voice-over-IP phones. It is a natural downstream extension of Linux's presence in the enterprise.

"But so far there are few such devices available in the U.S. market, and even those that run Linux do not have a logo or a public-relations machine to trumpet the fact. The depth to which Linux has penetrated this market, therefore, is something of a mystery. However, the evidence that does exist suggests consumer-electronics companies are taking advantage of the open-source platform to change some fundamental dynamics of their business.

"Asia, particularly Japan, is where gadgets sporting Linux appeared first. Some of the most recent entries into the marketplace include video recorders, such as the Sony Cocoon and the NEC AX10, and the Philips iPronto home remote control. Motorola is scheduled to ship a GPRS smartphone in Asia Pacific in the third quarter..."

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