Lee Williams nominated as executive director for the Symbian Foundation

The ten initial board members of the Symbian Foundation (AT&T, LG Electronics, Motorola, Nokia, NTT DOCOMO, Samsung Electronics, Sony Ericsson, ST-NXP Wireless, Texas Instruments and Vodafone) have announced the nomination of Lee Williams as the executive director for the planned foundation. Lee is currently head of the S60 organization in Nokia’s Devices business.
Kris Rinne, senior vice president for architecture and planning, AT&T on behalf of the initial board members, stated: “We are delighted to have such a strong and experienced leader to head the Symbian Foundation. Lee Williams is well known in our industry and has been a driving force in the establishment of the foundation. Following an extensive, independent selection process, we believe that he is the best candidate to lead the foundation. He will now work to ensure we get the most complete and competitive Symbian Foundation platform offering and setup the operations needed to drive the platform to its next phase of evolution as quickly as possible.”
Williams commented: “I feel honoured to have been invited to serve in this role. This is a great opportunity to directly help deliver on the promise of the foundation, working with the stakeholders and prospective members who are so committed to make this initiative a success. To me, there can be no more exciting role in the mobile software world than to lead the Symbian Foundation.”
52 companies have now announced their support for the planned Symbian Foundation, including 8 device manufacturers, 7 semiconductor companies, 9 mobile network operators, 27 services and software companies and 1 financial services provider.
As previously announced, the plans for the establishment of the Symbian Foundation and royalty-free licensing of foundation software are:
1. The acquisition of Symbian Limited by Nokia, expected to close in Q4, 2008, subject to regulatory approvals and customary closing conditions.
2. Software assets are contributed to the foundation, including Symbian OS(TM) and S60 by Nokia, UIQ technology by Motorola and Sony Ericsson and MOAP(S) by NTT DOCOMO and Fujitsu.
3. This contributed software will be available under a royalty-free license to foundation members from the first day of Symbian Foundation operations, expected 1H 2009.
4. The Foundation will work to unify the platform, with the first unified foundation release expected in 2009.
5. The foundation will work to make the platform available in open source by June 2010 (two years from the Symbian Foundation announcement)
Williams will remain in his current role as head of the S60 organization in Nokia’s Devices business until 1 January 2009, or until such time as the foundation and its leadership team are in place and operational. The operation of the foundation remains subject to customary closing conditions, including regulatory approvals.