Added November 2007

What is the Open Handset Alliance™?
The Open Handset Alliance is a group of 84 technology and mobile companies who have come together to accelerate innovation in mobile and offer consumers a richer, less expensive, and better mobile experience. Together we have developed Android™, the first complete, open, and free mobile platform. We are committed to commercially deploy handsets and services using the Android Platform.

What types of companies are in the Open Handset Alliance?
All parts of the mobile ecosystem are represented in the Alliance. Members include mobile operators, handset manufacturers, semiconductor companies, software companies, and commercialization companies. The current list of members can be found here.

What have members of the Alliance committed to?
All members of the Alliance have committed to making the initial version of the platform a commercial success. Some companies have contributed significant intellectual property to the Alliance that will be released under the Apache v2 Open Source license. Others are working to make sure their chipsets support the platform. Handset manufacturers and mobile operators are working to develop handsets based on the platform. Commercialization partners are working with the industry to support the platform via a professional services model.

Why is an open platform good for consumers?
Consumers will see cheaper and more innovative mobile devices and services, which will inevitably feature more engaging, easier-to-use interfaces — as well as a rich portfolio of applications.

Why is an open platform good for mobile operators?
The overall cost of handsets will be lower and mobile operators will have complete flexibility to customize and differentiate their product lines. Furthermore, they will see much more rapid innovation in handsets and in services.

Why is an open platform good for handset manufacturers?
Handset manufacturers will benefit from lower software BOM (bill of material) costs and faster time-to-market for handsets. In addition, they will have greater flexibility to customize and differentiate their product offerings.

Why is an open platform good for semiconductor companies?
As cellphone-on-a-chip becomes closer to reality, semiconductor companies will need access to more sophisticated software that takes advantage of the enhanced features of these solutions. The processors of tomorrow will be multi-core and have access to shared peripherals such as 3D graphics, signal processor cores and dedicated blocks for multi media acceleration, etc. Without support for these peripherals in the platform, semiconductor companies have no clear way to give 3rd party developers access to this enhanced functionality. An open platform helps semiconductor companies add support for their newest products in a timely manner.

Why is an open platform good for software companies?
An open platform allows for simplified integration of software components into a complete mobile platform, and the lower acquisition cost of the mobile platform will increase the ability of handset manufacturers to invest in high value and differentiated software components.

Why is an open platform good for developers?
Developers will be able innovate rapidly because they will have comprehensive API access to handset capabilities that are web-ready. They will experience increased productivity because they will have comprehensive and easy-to-use developer tools. And because open source offers a deeper understanding of the underlying mobile platform, they can better optimize their applications. Finally, the distribution and commercialization of mobile apps will be less expensive and easier.

Who can join the Open Handset Alliance?
The Open Handset Alliance brings together companies in the mobile ecosystem that each contribute to the effort in various ways. We welcome companies willing to make serious and ongoing contributions to openness in the mobile world.

Who do we contact to learn about joining the Open Handset Alliance?
Email us at info@openhandsetalliance.com

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