Symbian reports first half and second quarter results for 2008

Symbian, the open operating systems for mobile phones business, has released unaudited financial and operational figures for the second quarter ended 30 June 2008.

To the end of the second quarter this year, 225.9 million cumulative Symbian OS units have shipped across 249 different phone models since the formation of Symbian. During Q2, 19.6 million Symbian mobile phones shipped to consumers worldwide, showing an increase of 5% on Q2 2007.

As expected, average royalty per unit declined as licensees migrated onto v9 of Symbian OS with a licensing pricing structure designed to significantly increase market adoption.

At the end of Q2, seven Symbian licensees had 92 phone models in development, an increase of 48% on Q2 2007 with 62 models. This is the highest ever achieved by the company.

In Q2, eight handset vendors, including the world’s five leading vendors, were shipping 159 mobile phone models, the majority of which were based on Symbian OS v9, including the latest release of Symbian OS v9.3, optimized for convergence. In total,14 new models commenced shipment in Q2 including the Motorola Z10, Nokia E71, Nokia N78 and Nokia 6220, Samsung G810, Sony Ericsson G700 and Sony Ericsson G900, and several handsets for the NTT DOCOMO FOMA network including the SO906i, F906i and SH906iTV.

On 24th June, marking Symbian’s 10 year anniversary, Nokia announced its intent to acquire the share of Symbian that it did not already own, approximately 52%. The transaction is expected to be completed during the second half of 2008 and is subject to regulatory approval and customary closing conditions.

Simultaneously, industry leaders including AT&T, LG Electronics, Motorola, Nokia, NTT DOCOMO, Samsung Electronics, Sony Ericsson, STMicroelectronics, Texas Instruments and Vodafone announced plans to establish the Symbian Foundation, which will combine Symbian OS with S60, UIQ and MOAP(S) to create a global unified, royalty free mobile software platform. The Foundation is expected to start operating during the first half of 2009, subject to the closing of the acquisition of Symbian by Nokia.

Nigel Clifford, Symbian CEO, commented: “We are pleased to report that a total of 19.6 million Symbian mobile phones were shipped over 250 major network operators globally in the quarter. Symbian celebrated its tenth anniversary at the end of June, with a cumulative total of 225.9 million Symbian mobile phones shipped since formation. This number is based on nearly 250 models, designed and shipped by the worlds leading handset manufacturers.

“In ten years we’ve achieved an enormous amount,” he continued. “Together with our customers we have invented, built and continue to lead the smartphone market. We are particularly pleased that our customers have reported that Symbian mobile phones are strong contributors to their financial performance and that each of our licensees has shipped at least one new Symbian mobile phone model since the beginning of 2008.”

Through the Symbian Foundation, mobile leaders plan to unify the Symbian software platform with user interface software and provide this new platform under a royalty-free license. The initiative is supported by all our major shareholders and Symbian management. Membership of this non-profit foundation will be open to all organizations and plans for the foundation have already received wide support from many industry leaders, with initial board members including five leading handset manufacturers (LG Electronics, Motorola, Nokia, Samsung Electronics and Sony Ericsson), leading operators (AT&T, NTT DOCOMO and Vodafone) and hardware manufacturers (STMicroelectronics and TI).

Nigel Clifford continued, Ten years ago, Symbian was established by far sighted players to offer an advanced open operating system and software skills to the whole mobile industry. Our vision is for Symbian OS to become the most widely used software platform on the planet and indeed today it leads its market by any measure. The Symbian Foundation is a bold new step to achieve that vision by embracing a complete and proven platform, offered in an open and royalty-free way, designed to stimulate innovation which is at the heart of everything we do.

He added: “For the past ten years, helping our customers succeed has been our number one priority. We believe we have remained number one because we’re the only company in our industry that is built from the ground up to create what might be described as a pure, open mobile OS for the good of the industry in consultation with our partners and licensees.

“Achieving 225.9 million devices is tremendous success but we know that others are targeting this market. However, we believe that the combination of Symbian’s unrivalled product offering, development roadmap, ecosystem and experience in the open mobile market now supplemented with the future support of the Symbian Foundation, Symbian OS should continue to lead the market. Were pleased with our progress and very excited about pioneering the next wave of mobile innovation.”

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