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Linux Foundation the latest in ARM’s web of mobile alliances

ARM, whose processor designs are used in the vast majority of mobile devices, is increasingly becoming a power broker in the mobile web world, allying with a range of larger partners to create an open platform that is geared to the ARM architecture, rather than Intel's x86. The latest is the Linux Foundation, the non-profit organization that recently took on responsibility for Intel's own Linux system, Moblin.

ARM, whose processor designs are used in the vast majority of mobile devices, is increasingly becoming a power broker in the mobile web world, allying with a range of larger partners to create an open platform that is geared to the ARM architecture, rather than Intel’s x86. The latest is the Linux Foundation, the non-profit organization that recently took on responsibility for Intel’s own Linux system, Moblin.

As Intel seeks to challenge ARM and bring x86 deep into the handset market with new low-power designs, a David & Goliath stand-off is developing, and ARM is keen to present its platform as the natural one for emerging product categories like smartbooks, which are targeted at mobile internet usage and the cloud. It already has important pacts with Intel rivals like Qualcomm and Texas Instruments, and with software players like Adobe, while it is also close to Android.

Its latest partnership shows ARM trying to exercise its influence across the whole Linux ecosystem (it is also part of the LiMO Foundation). It has contributed to the Linux kernel, said the Foundation, which aims to promote Linux in all its forms rather than specific distributions. ARM’s partnership with leading semiconductor and device manufacturers will help to strengthen the mobile software ecosystem and extend the market for Linux-based products, the group added.

“There is a transition taking place right now that moves computing from the PC to more innovative mobile and consumer devices,” said Ian Drew, EVP of marketing at ARM, in a statement.” ARM has been a leader in enabling this transition and joining the Linux Foundation is a natural step towards advancing innovation in the Linux community for a rich, always-connected, computing experience.”