LG, RIM, Samsung and Sharp to support operator widget spec

The first phones that can run the software widgets will become available during the first quarter of 2010

LG Electronics, Research in Motion, Samsung Electronics and Sharp will all make mobile phones with support for a specification for software widgets set by a group of mobile operators, the Joint Innovation Lab (JIL) said on Wednesday.

Phones that run the widgets -- small, web-based applications that give users access to information services including weather, sport scores, traffic information or translations -- will become available during the first quarter of 2010, JIL said. Network operators Vodafone, China Mobile, Softbank and Verizon Wireless are all members of the lab.

It's the first time that major handset manufacturers have committed to global adoption of the JIL widget standard across devices, JIL said. The move could mean a larger number of widgets for consumers to choose between, since platforms tend to get more popular as the number of users increase.

The first JIL-enabled phones in Europe will be Vodafone's 360 H1 and 360 M1, manufactured by Samsung, the British carrier announced in September. The H1 will start shipping in the U.K. on Oct. 30, according to a Vodafone spokesman.

Just like a plethora of mobile phone manufacturers and other network operators, Vodafone has started a contest to lure developers. The winners in eight countries will get €25,000 each (US$37,500).

The SDK (Software Development Kit) is still in beta and can be downloaded by registered users from the JIL developer website.

Developers will be able to distribute their widgets via operators' application stores, according to a statement.

Widgets have become an important part of the mobile Internet experience, according to Jonathan Arber, senior research analyst at IDC. While its good that the operators have seen their potential there is a risk for fragmentation as both operators and mobile phone manufacturers put out their own SDKs, he said.

Instead both camps should push harder for an industrywide standard, which would make like easier for developers, according to Arber. =

Join the newsletter!

Or

Sign up to gain exclusive access to email subscriptions, event invitations, competitions, giveaways, and much more.

Membership is free, and your security and privacy remain protected. View our privacy policy before signing up.

Error: Please check your email address.

Tags smartphonesmobile phoneswidgetlgsharpsamsungRIM BlackBerry

Keep up with the latest tech news, reviews and previews by subscribing to the Good Gear Guide newsletter.

Mikael Ricknäs

IDG News Service
Show Comments

Cool Tech

Toys for Boys

Family Friendly

Stocking Stuffer

SmartLens - Clip on Phone Camera Lens Set of 3

Learn more >

Christmas Gift Guide

Click for more ›

Brand Post

Most Popular Reviews

Latest Articles

Resources

PCW Evaluation Team

Aysha Strobbe

Microsoft Office 365/HP Spectre x360

Microsoft Office continues to make a student’s life that little bit easier by offering reliable, easy to use, time-saving functionality, while continuing to develop new features that further enhance what is already a formidable collection of applications

Michael Hargreaves

Microsoft Office 365/Dell XPS 15 2-in-1

I’d recommend a Dell XPS 15 2-in-1 and the new Windows 10 to anyone who needs to get serious work done (before you kick back on your couch with your favourite Netflix show.)

Maryellen Rose George

Brother PT-P750W

It’s useful for office tasks as well as pragmatic labelling of equipment and storage – just don’t get too excited and label everything in sight!

Cathy Giles

Brother MFC-L8900CDW

The Brother MFC-L8900CDW is an absolute stand out. I struggle to fault it.

Luke Hill

MSI GT75 TITAN

I need power and lots of it. As a Front End Web developer anything less just won’t cut it which is why the MSI GT75 is an outstanding laptop for me. It’s a sleek and futuristic looking, high quality, beast that has a touch of sci-fi flare about it.

Emily Tyson

MSI GE63 Raider

If you’re looking to invest in your next work horse laptop for work or home use, you can’t go wrong with the MSI GE63.

Featured Content

Don’t have an account? Sign up here

Don't have an account? Sign up now

Forgot password?