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Going Open Costs Symbian Millions, but Worth It

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eWEEK's Darryl K. Taft is wondering just what Symbian hopes to gain by giving up at least $300 million a year in software royalties and taking the mobile phone operating system open source. Speaking at the Symbian Smartphone Show in London last week, CEO Nigel Clifford explained he doesn't see it as sacrificing $300 million.

 

"We're putting $300 million back into the ecosystem," he said, noting that the company went open source to make the operating system more attractive, and "to reduce the time to innovation." What's more, according to Clifford, "Symbian loves a challenge," and this is one way to pull more developers into the work. (Taft quotes one Symbian SVP on the three most important words to the company: Developers, developers, developers.)

 

Other observers note that the move is simply recognition of where the software industry is going. What Taft wants to know -- and I'm curious, too -- is this: Is it worth $300 million a year? What do you think? How would you make the decision?

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