Android isn’t even passe and we are potentially looking at the next Android, which might be more useful than Android itself. Yahoo has teamed up with world’s largest mobile chipset maker Mediatek to make feature phones smarter. The real challenge is not in putting a dual core processer or a bigger touch screen in to a mobile phone and jack up the price. The real challenge is in providing computing power at a minimal cost.
Mediatek’s MAUI run time environment (MRE) will act as a middleware over the feature phone’s OS. This MRE will have the capability to give Internet access and also run apps (if we go by smartphone gobbledygook) which can enhance a feature phones capabilities.
Yahoo will play the app provider role by giving access to its mobile services like News, Messenger, Finance and weather. Flickr, Entertainment and Cricket for India will be coming in later. All these services are expected to be rolled out by Q4 of 2011.
Spice CSL , Nexian, Cherry Mobile and Spice Group are the companies which will work with Mediatek and Yahoo to get the ‘smarter’ phones into the markets in Malaysia, Indonesia, Philippines and India.
Mediatek is the chipset found in many feature phones from Spice and Micromax in India. In fact, Mediatek is the backbone for low-cost mobile phones in India and single most important company behind meteoric rise of India’s home-grown handset manufacturers. Less than 30% of the phones are smartphones in the world. That gives a potential 70% of the existing phones out there which can be smarter phones. And think of all those who don’t yet have a phone but eagerly waiting or working for a phone?
If done right, Mediatek’s MAUI has a potential to surpass Android’s success in terms of sheer possibilities.
Does MAUI stand for Mediatek Another User Interface?