Japan’s Fujitsu and Sharp have revealed 11 new smartphone models running Symbian software – a rare show of support for Nokia’s diminishing software platform.
Though Symbian is the largest smartphone operating system, featuring on more than 400 million such phones since 2000, it has lost ground since the introduction of Apple’s iPhone in 2007, and Japan is the only market where other manufacturers than Nokia are still taking it on.
Over the last year Samsung and Sony Ericsson have both abandoned using Symbian in favour of Android. On Monday, Nokia said it would take over development of the platform from April 2011, resuming management of a key asset it gave to the independent Symbian Foundation to run only a few years ago.
Although Nokia receives no direct benefit from other makers using the platform, its own portfolio is helped by the breadth of independent software developed for use on the phone, which in turn is increased by a bigger user base.