Embedded Linux software developer Lineo, Inc. has announced a strategic relationship with Samsung Electro-Mechanics Co., Ltd. to advance market options for low-cost Internet access.
Under the terms of the agreement, which was announced Thursday at a ceremony in Seoul, Korea, Samsung will tap Lineo’s Embedix operating system for use in its embedded Internet appliances. The companies will also partner on education, sales and marketing efforts.
“This partnership is an important milestone for Samsung,” commented Samsung CEO Lee Hyung-Do.
The project, which is Samsung’s first involvement with Linux, will attempt to tap into what could be a potentially explosive market. According to Dataquest, 2.5 percent of the 4.8 billion microprocessors sold internationally in 1998 were installed in PCs, making the embedded systems market 40 times larger than the PC-specific market.
Samsung will initially use Embedix Linux and the Embedix Browser in PDAs and set-top access boxes.
Linux for the Car?
Lineo also announced this week that it will acquire Rt-Control, Inc., the creators of the uClinux operating system.
“The combination of the technologies from Lineo and Rt-Control opens up the ability for developers to put Linux on devices that would otherwise be cost prohibitive,” stated Lineo CEO Bryan Sparks. “As a result, consumers will see Linux in many more devices, including cell phones and automobiles.”
Tapping the Asian Internet Access Market
Lineo recently made a significant move on the burgeoning market for Internet access in the Asia Pacific region by announcing strategic relationships with several Taiwan-based embedded system manufacturers.
The agreements, with Arima, Compal Electronics, First International Computer (FIC), Micro-Star, Mitac and Wisecom, will bring Lineo’s Embedix embedded Linux product line to Asian consumers through the companies’ Internet appliance products.
According to Sparks, the partnerships “will encourage the broad deployment of Internet appliances and other embedded devices throughout the Asian market, including countries like mainland China, India and others, where traditional PCs have not experienced a high rate of adoption among small businesses and home consumers.”
Lineo, the company formerly known as Caldera Thin Clients, is a developer of embedded Linux-based applications and software, helping OEMs to expand the market for Internet access-enabling embedded devices. The company produces the Embedix line of products, which include Embedix Linux, Embedix SDK and the Embedix Browser.