Leading mobile-technology companies have formed an alliance to prevent Intel and Microsoft dominating the market, industry insiders say.
Nokia, ARM, ST Microelectronics and Texas Instruments have formed the Mobile Industry Processor Interface (MIPI) Alliance. Industry insiders say MIPI will deflect attempts by Intel and Microsoft to expand their presence in the developing mobile-device market by complementing the work of existing standards bodies, such as the Third Generation Partnership project (3GPP) and Open Mobile Alliance. It will do this, they say, through a focus on open-standards support in processors, peripherals and software interfaces.
Other companies interested in helping develop these standards are welcome to join the group, MIPI organizers said.
"The more members who join this new alliance, the better, because there will be other camps, and one of them could include Intel and Microsoft," said Gartner analyst Alan Brown.
Apple's QuickTime 6.3 is a component part of the 3GPP standard. When QuickTime was announced, Nokia's senior technology manager for multimedia technologies Janne Juhola said: "Our company is strongly committed to the creation of an ecosystem in which open standards ensure interoperability across a wide range of device categories, networks, services and applications. Nokia believes the inclusion of 3GPP support in QuickTime creates a wealth of exciting new opportunities for both desktop and mobile phone users."
The establishment of the group is also a response to interest generated by STM and TI's Open Mobile Application Processor Interfaces (OMAPI) initiative. This aimed to improve how multimedia applications appear and run on GPRS and 3G phones and devices.
As part of the new alliance, the four founding members will establish ten working groups to develop specifications in key areas such as camera and display and system control.
Standards are needed to make mobile phones, networks and software from different vendors work together better, the organizer's explained.
Nokia views the MIPI Alliance as an "excellent forum" to speed up the time it takes to develop new products and bring them to market – simply by focusing on open standards.