Jolla’s MeeGo based phone with new UI coming this year

| July 9, 2012 | 211 Replies


Joni and Jiipee from Finland have some interesting news on Jolla, the future direction of Maemo/MeeGo outside of Nokia, from Finnish media. I can’t wait to see Jolla Mobile’s products.  This feels much more of a truer direction, what with actual use of MeeGo and ex Nokia staff on board, as opposed to Tizen which has as much MeeGo spirit in it as my bagel.

Joni got this from today’s Aamulehti which is apparently not online.

  • – at the moment near 50 employees. At end of this year 100 employees.
  • – offices in Helsinki and Tampere
  • – manufacturing: 3 big international partners and finnish subcontractors too.
  • – first products this year
  • – aims at the ‘big game’. It is difficult to be a small company in telecom industry.
  • – Jolla-phone: user uses the device and not vice versa. They’ll be making their own UI
  • – CEO Jussi Hurmola worked 12 years at Nokia. Last years with N9
  • – Hurmola’s interpretation: Nokia has taken Jolla-project nicely
  • – He thanks Nokia for being serious and sincere ( or frank) regarding the project.

Cross referencing with Jiipee’s info from TV4

  • – They were suprised on the amount of interest
  • – They have approx 50 employees at the moment: engineers, devs, designers, marketing professionals, more than 50% are former Nokians. All dedicated to open source development
  • – Nokia knows what they are doing – they have been very open on it! (could this mean no IP wars to be expected). He has been working for Nokia for 12 years and says that Nokia is superb company (clearly no hard feelings)
  • – They had other alternatives such as Android, but chose Meego because they can be on the drivers seat. With Meego they will be able to integrate different parts to a full UX instead of separate apps
  • – the phone will be released this year

Watch here:

Cheers Joni and Jiipee for the tip!


Category: Jolla, Nokia

About the Author ()

Hey, thanks for reading my post. My name is Jay and I'm a medical student at the University of Manchester. When I can, I blog here at and tweet now and again @jaymontano. We also have a twitter and facebook accounts @mynokiablog and Check out the tips, guides and rules for commenting >>click<< Contact us at tips(@) or email me directly on jay[at]
  • i am so excited to hear. n9 was one of the Nokia specials and hope that this jolla thing would be a milestone. Nokia plan B or whatever this is quite awesome news to breakout.

  • Tiago Silva

    I’m dubious. ACL would be great but with a single core Dalvik translation would make apps run very slowly. And, more importantly, Jolla won’t have access to Nokia’s SwipeUI code.

    I came to the N9 for SwipeUI.

    • Hary

      Exactly. Lot of people here go crazy about Meego due to N9, but the main attraction was the swipe UI that Nokia created.

    • Muerte

      Who said Jolla won’t have the access to it? It is well known in Finland, that Nokia stated around the first cost-saving announcements, that they are willing to donate patents and IPR to startups in Finland, if it enables the former Nokia employees to get a job.

      I’m quite sure that the co-operation between Nokia and Jolla is deeper than it looks at the first sight.

      The important part of that news is translated roughly as:

      “Nokia is willing to transfer parts of its IPR to enterprises and universities for future development to ensure, that the employees losing their jobs could utilise them in terms of self-employment. By donating the patents Nokia is trying to assist the establishment of new enterprises in Finland”

      And, if you remember/know, Jolla’s address is located in the biggest Finnish university’s, Aalto University’s incubator. And the CEO of Jolla has stated clearly, that “Nokia has been very compliant with what they are doing”. And the fact that these guys were all still working for Nokia when Jolla was established in 2011?

      This is pure speculation, but I think we are witnessing something great here guys!

    • Mariusmssj

      Not even that Jolla’s MeeGo will be fully open source, community will be able to change UI anyway they please or want to 😀

      • viktor von d.

        no. nokia has the rights to the swipe ui and it’s using it on the s40. it’s an asset of theirs, they aren’t going to share it

        • viktor von d.

          it’s pretty surprising that all of this started last year and nokia is suporting these guys. something is happening here and i think nokia is behind all of this

        • incognito

          Who can stop modders from re-implementing the Swipe UI even if not officially condoned by Nokia? The UI layer will be completely open to tweaking, we might even see a better Swipe UI implementation than the current Nokia’s one, even if not officially provided by Jolla to avoid possible patent/copyright litigations…

  • Dan

    Go Jolla! Fuck Elop!

    • Matti

      Congrats to guys at Jolla. You got away from Elop’s stinky and burning platform taken over by the Redmond pirates.

      Small ships, like jollas, will dance around those big pirate ships and sail into the bright future.

  • Dan

    Jay should change mynokiablog in to myjollablog!

    • Trevi

      Nah. I think that in order to combine these two company blogs he should name it to “MyFinnishExcellentCellphoneManufacturersBlog”

  • Dan

    I want to see Swipe UI plus widgets, 4.8″ screen, 720×1280, Quad Core, dedicated camera button, 2 GB RAM, removeable battery and notification light.

    • jiipee

      you should tweet them. They had someting like jollaspecs or similar among their latest tweets

  • bbb

    create a and no more fighting between Ms fan and meego fans.

    I think new jolla ui will be called “Slide”

  • Javajaded

    This, without a doubt, one the stupidest ideas I have heard in a long time. If Jolla gets fully funded (a big if), their investors are guaranteed a 100% loss on their investment.

    • Gäst

      Why do you think that?

      • Javajaded

        In order for a mobile platform to be successful you absolutely need a robust 3rd party applications community. So what is the incentive for a 3rd party app developer to write to this platform? And even if they do, what is it’s priority over its much higher volume competitors?
        Making a sound investment is about finding market volume.

    • Mariusmssj

      Oh yeah there is obviously a much higher chance of them failing than succeeding but i think the dedicated MeeGo community will help them any way they can!

    • Fidelus Patharaky

      It will be easier for me to risk my money for this start-up then for Nokia under StevElop and companions. Don’t worry about enthusuast’s investment. I have lost enough on investment in Nokia, and somehow I feel that with Microsoft “help” I will never obtain any return on investment, however I didn’t even suspect such a risk witn Nokia.

      • Javajaded

        That is clearly a very strange investment criteria. Comparing a bad investment with a bad investment is an interesting strategy. Why don’t you unemotionally look at investments that have a good chance of making a healthy return?

    • incognito

      Compared, I assume, to Nokia investors who just lost 80+% of their investment since Elop took the helm, and more than 94% of their investment with the combined effort of OPK and Elop?

  • bbb

    why they have kept the secret for so long?

    • Mariusmssj

      Well they now feel confident enough

    • Muerte

      Apparently they had to finalize the work in Nokia first (they released the 1.3 update). Also, this might just be the right time to come out – no big announcements from “competitors”, maybe the product is developed so far that it is safe to say that it will be released during this year, or something else. 🙂

      • jiipee

        or they just got their funding and manufacturing contracts settled and before that had a working proof-of-concept

  • stylinred

    and they licensed pureview tech through relations! oh man that would be awesome!

  • deep space bar

    I have a theory…..

    this might be the only way to save meego….and nokia… without elop realizing it ….since so many employees got fired …

    SO they continue on the renamed Meego and license i to Nokia since WP7 not doing nokia justice at all and they killed Symbian

    • BJ

      Yeah, it happens quite often in the tech world – a breakaway team from a company builds a new startup, develops a product and after some time gets absorbed back. It would also allow Nokia to save face for the time being since Microsoft can’t be too happy with Nokia actively being busy with another competing OS.

      • deep space bar

        I hope they can fix nokia and kill WP7

        • jr89

          Or killing WP8 as well.

  • torcida

    Will there be swipe ui at jolly mobile!?!?
    Or not?

  • Waqas Ahmad Khan

    Jolla is plan B for all Nokia fans.

    • jr89


  • Muerte

    Sorry for others, but for Finns this is a great interview. I’ll try to translate the main points:

    – Jolla was established by Nokia’s bridge project (most likely IPR transfered as well)
    – Fruitful co-operation in both ways (Jolla-Nokia)
    – They are an independent company
    – They are here to create something new in terms of user experience and technology. Something significant. They wan’t to be the leaders, not followers.
    – Devices coming this year (they will announce only things that they can deliver)
    – Production in Asia (most likely, doesn’t reveal who are the partners) via ODM partners.
    – Surprised by the massive global interest after saturday
    – Thankful to Nokia
    – They aim to be truly big in the next few years (as he sees that in ten years this industry is so different/it doesn’t exist in the way it is today, nobody can forecast the change)
    – They are not trying to be “the new Nokia”

    • Muerte

      And the link ofcourse 🙂

    • Janne

      – Jolla was established by Nokia’s bridge project (most likely IPR transfered as well)

      Wow! I speculated on that but couldn’t dream of Nokia being so generous about this – it being a competing product after all.

      Well, that is some social responsibility on Nokia’s part. Very impressive for both Jolla and Nokia obviously.

      • Janne

        So, Elop the space nazi just sponsored an open source offspring.

        How the world turns.

        • Janne

          I doubt anyone can now go on claiming Nokia wants to kill everything for Microsoft’s benefit.

          • Muerte

            I agree, this is truly a generous contribution from Nokia. As at least Finns remember, it was in the news that Nokia will help new enterprises in Finland to be established and nourish them with IPR.


            Jussi is saying that the manufacturing will most probably be done in Asia, but he didn’t say that it can’t be Nokia who is putting the electronic parts together. This would be almost too far, and I see players like Foxconn more probable.

            • Janne

              Nokia does have a long history of spinning off technologies and things they don’t themselves use. They have other programs for this as well, have had for years.

              They are very generous this way. Unlike Apple that just kills everything it doesn’t use.

              • Muerte

                What do you think, could it be so that they can use the industrial designs from the original Nokia’s meego devices as well? There has to be quite a lot of those, as MeeGo was originally Nokia’s plan A.

                For me, it seems that they need such help from somewhere, as they are promising devices (yes, with an S) during this year. I assume that designing a device from scratch takes a little longer, if you talk about a startup company that was established 9 months ago?

                • Janne

                  My initial response would be, no. My hunch.

                  But then I couldn’t stretch my imagination to believe this is a Nokia Bridge company either.

            • Janne

              Still in awe of these news, even though I toyed with this idea earlier today in this thread. I mean, I never thought Elop and the gang evil like many think, but I also never thought they’d be this generous – sponsoring a competing business just to let MeeGo live and their former MeeGo employees to make a living of it (or at least a fair chance at it).

              Just tremendous. Huge move.

              • Muerte

                Another interview:

                Mr. Hurmola, a 12-year Nokia veteran who recently joined other ex-Nokia employees at Jolla, said the company needed to raise about €10 million ($12.3 million) from private investors to develop the forthcoming smartphone. He said Jolla will need to sell between 50,000 to 100,000 devices to break even.

                “There is this view that certain players dominate the market, but it’s not really true,” he said. “If you look at any two year span in the mobile industry you see that the type of devices and the companies dominating the market change dramatically. If we manage to hit the right notes, I’m sure market will change with us. We are not aiming to become a niche player.” He said Jolla’s first MeeGo smartphone is due to be announced later this year, and added that Jolla has already signed deals with several partners.

                “The plan is to make MeeGo devices. But in the modern world you can’t just make a device, you also need a platform and a full ecosystem including applications and services,” Mr. Hurmola said. “Our intent is to run the full ecosystem.”

                In conjunction with Nokia’s large strategy overhaul, MeeGo’s brand and its assets were transferred to the Linux Foundation, a nonprofit organization that maintains the Linux trademark and is dedicated to fostering the growth of Linux.

                Mr. Hurmola said MeeGo has many desirable features, such as a proper security framework, a fast and fluid user interface and support for full multitasking.


                • Janne

                  I think the burning platform metaphor just got a new meaning.

                  In addition to jumping as a company, Nokia also helped launch a dinghy in the other direction.

                  • Muerte

                    Yes, in that YLE’s interview CEO Jussi also says, that “indeed, we are a dinghy heading for the open seas” 🙂 I’m thrilled.

                    • Janne

                      I’m thrilled for two reasons:

                      – Jolla is an exciting project, for open source fans and for Finns too

                      – Nokia showing their true values, why they are no Apple or Microsoft

                      Kudos, Nokia. Kudos, Jolla.

                      Elop, all’s forgiven.

                      Huge stuff. I’m still reeling.

      • James

        Well, if you read the big thread a TMO some people who’ve worked for them go on to explain that it’s pretty standard.
        They haven’t “gone out of their way” to help Jolla & it’s employees, they’ve just stuck with their standard severance package system.
        Which is quite generous/socially responsible, not sure how it compares to similar players in the industry, but world/industry-wide it certainly is.
        Getting a little overly excited there methinks…. 😉

  • JGrove303

    It all fits into the Microsoft contract. Or around it I should say. This is truly awesome.

    • Janne

      I think that may be pushing the meaning of this, but all in all, not even I was that big of a believer that I expected this to be a Nokia Bridge company (I thought co-operation possible, but not sponsoring like that)… wow, just wow.

  • Titanium

    Nokia should officially pass N9 support to JollaMobile. This way they can sell loads of N9 (because this way it’s no more a dead smartphone) and support JollaMobile. A win-win scenario

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  • Geektech

    Be aware m$ Nokia is comming to collect the rent, thos couldn’t be more awesome news.Go Jolla bring us the prototype and let us preorder ahead, hope this have a N900 N9 integration.

  • James


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  • Carbontubby

    Swipe UI would be nice but not really necessary. Check out the Mer project pages for an open source UI for Meego-based devices.

    I felt the N9 was a halfway attempt at making a proper open source, Linux-based phone, especially since most of its internals weren’t open. Now we have a good chance at a non-Googlefied Linux device with a fully open codebase and a great community rallying around it… and Qt on mobile lives on!

    “As opposed to Tizen which has as much MeeGo spirit in it as my bagel”, that really made my morning. Thanks for the line Jay 🙂

    • Carbontubby

      To the Jolla crew: make an N9 with a big fat removable battery, microSD, USB OTG, FM transmitter, BT4, 802.11N, a 720p 4.5″ screen, awesome stereo mics and speakers, and the keyboard straight out of the E7…

      And here’s my money! 🙂 I don’t care how much this thing costs, it could well be the next Psion.

      • incognito

        Just a couple of additions: HDMI/DP out and NFC from the connectivity set, and 2GB RAM and either ARM A15 CPU or some from the latest Intel Medfield silicon, of course accompanied by a GPU powerful enough to drive the 720p / 1080p (for HDMI-out) pixels…

        I don’t care if it is thick as the N900, I’d get it in an instant and I’d pay a proper powerful-laptop money for it. If they can make it look similar to the E7, all the better.

  • Eric

    I think it’s great news if they are allowed to evolve the meego platform and interface. I must say that I love the human to machine/software interface and if they can continue to improve that they’ll have one of the best phones on the market, if they marry it to increasingly better hardware.

    From my perspective there is no other phone that excites as much as the N9 at the moment. It’s an crying shame that Nokia didn’t capitalise further on it’s virtues and through it’s lot in with Microsoft – a company that hardly excites anybody these days (unfortunately so, but that’s just plain, poor internal management that focuses entirely on cost at the expense on people, trust I know, because they use the same approach to managing staff as IBM does – both losers).

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