SUSE MeeGo - Novell backed distribution

Published by Rafe Blandford at 16:00 UTC, June 1st 2010

Today Novell announced it would support for MeeGo, by releasing SUSE MeeGo as a fully supported operating system for netbook computers. It builds on top of MeeGo project releases by adding additional pre-installed applications (e.g. Open Office) and proprietary multimedia codecs (WMA, MP3 etc.), thus making a more consumer ready version of the operating system. Novell say that they expect it to be pre-installed on a variety of netbook devices, from multiple OEMs, in the next 12 months.

This is good news for the MeeGo project as it means there will be a commercial distribution of MeeGo available for device manufacturers (and possibly users too). This makes it more likely that devices with MeeGo pre-installed will be available in shops. Novell will be adding additional elements to the MeeGo for its SUSE MeeGo distribution, these are likely to include:

  • Novell Edition
  • Adobe Flash and Acrobat Reader
  • Video games including 2D Boy World of Goo
  • Hooks to Facebook, LastFM, Flickr, and Myspace 
  • Proprietary media codecs for high-quality playback of Windows Media, AAC, and MPEG video and audio formats

From the press release:

"Our commitment to ship SUSE MeeGo further extends our position as the leading OS vendor in the desktop Linux market," said Guy Lunardi, director of Client Preloads at Novell. "Novell is passionate about providing users with a better computing experience and MeeGo will deliver on that promise. Our experience as the leading commercial provider of desktop Linux* environments - from thin clients, to workstations, through netbooks, notebooks and desktop devices - puts us in a great position to deliver SUSE MeeGo to a broad base of original equipment and device manufacturers."

Novell has previously released SUSE Moblin, a commercial distribution based on Intel's Moblin 2.0. Both Samsung and MSI released SUSE MeeGo powered netbooks into the market. As such SUSE MeeGo represents a continuation of Novell's existing activities in this space.

In the press release Novell says it is now "a key participant in the development of MeeGo". It will presumably be focusing on the MeeGo netbook experience with it manufacturer partners. Novell is demoing SUSE MeeGo at its stand at the Computex exhibition / trade conference, which is currently under way in Taiwan.

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