WindRiver: More Android Phones, Quicker To Market?

Did you know that the Open Handset Alliance has 9 Manufacturing partners? Its true, despite there being only 1 Android Phone on the market: ASUS, Garmin, HTC, Huawei, LG, Motorola, Samsung, Sony Ericsson and Toshiba are all members of the OHA. While we’re waiting, both eagerly and helplessly, some of the top manufacturer’s in the world have experienced (rumored) delays in bringing an Android Phone to market.

We can’t do anything about it… but perhaps WindRiver can. The AndroidGuys published an article today about WindRiver creating a commercial software solution for handset makers and will incorporate and maintain the Android OS within their framework, lowering the risk associated with development.

There is one small problem… this news isn’t new. The article sourced was published yesterday, January 5th but the press release associated with this announcement is from October 2008. Don’t get me wrong – this isn’t meant as a knock on AndroidGuys… we’re just wondering what WindRiver has been up to since then.

You would THINK that with all the delays these manufacturers are having, they wouldn’t mind employing WindRiver to oversee some of the integration and maintenance… at least to help the quick and efficient launch of their first device. Instead, companies like Motorla are employing teams of 350+ to work on their Android initiatives. Where is the fruit of this labor?

In an interview with Investor.com, WindRiver CEO Ken Klein suggested this is exactly what should be happening as the article explains, “Wind River CEO Ken Klein expects more device makers to shift from in-house software teams to commercial software vendors such as Wind River to save money.”

We already know that WindRiver is working with Kyocera… but who else? If you ask us, there SHOULD be a bunch of Android Phones launching in Q1 or Q2 of 2009… but there probably won’t be. What manufacturer’s out there are calling WindRiver about Android?

We have an E-Mail into WindRiver but chances are we won’t learn anything new – these are things the manufacturers would typically like to announce themselves while WindRiver works diligently, collecting checks in the background.

If it means more Android phones, quicker to market, than we’re certainly rooting for WindRiver’s success with Android and its manufacturing partners, but a couple parts of the Investor.com interview stuck out as unpolished and potentially offensive:

  • Asked about competitors, Ken Klein stated that Microsoft was the only real competitor and the rest were, “a bunch of midgets and dwarves”.
  • The very next sentence, in the midst of an economic crisis, he says, “We’re taking market share away from those smaller, private companies. That’s the good news about a recession — the rich get richer.”

Not to take anything away from the company… these two comments were just… rather shocking to me coming from a CEO. But I guess in today’s economy, there isn’t time for pussy-footing around.

Time to scour the rest of the OHA, particularly the quiet behind-the-scenes members, to see if they’ve got any interesting happenings as of late.

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  • Nate

    I’m a big fan of LG… I want to see what they pull out for sure. And I’m a HUGE fan of ASUS mobo’s. I wonder what they’re cooking up. hMmMmmMmmm