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LinuxInsider: Linux and the Asian PDA Markets: The Fight Begins

Sep 17, 2003, 00:00 (0 Talkback[s])
(Other stories by Jan Krikke)

"Asia's PDA markets have long been dominated by local players that have developed their own proprietary operating systems, with support for local languages serving as one of their strongest selling points. But Palm and Microsoft have targeted the Asian PDA market, and regional players increasingly are turning to Linux to fight against the global giants.

"No one doubts the Linux upstarts face an uphill battle. For one, Palm and Pocket PC offer a wider range of software. Moreover, most Linux PDAs lack the ability to synchronize with Windows and Mac OS. Perhaps most importantly, the smaller players lack the marketing clout of their bigger rivals.

"But proponents claim the Linux players can take advantage of Asia's growing aversion to proprietary software and its restrictive licensing terms. They also argue that Linux is more flexible. In addition, a growing number of Asian PDA makers have concluded that hardware cannot sustain the industry and that profits must come from network services--which could level the playing field for the Linux upstarts..."

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