Open Kernel Labs Enables World's First Virtualized Smartphone

Open Kernel Labs (OK Labs), the leading provider of mobile virtualization software for mobile phones and broadband internet devices, today announced that the company's OKL4 embedded hypervisor delivers unique benefits of virtualization to handset OEMs and mobile phone users for Motorola's Evoke™ QA4 touchscreen slider smartphone. High functionality (offering Linux applications and touch screen support) and fast performance on a single ARM processor, at a mass market price, are among the benefits now being realized.
Mobile Virtualization
Accomplished for the first time in a commercially available phone, OKL4's mobile virtualization solution enabled Linux and an RTOS to run side by side on a single ARM processor, offering decreased bill-of-materials (BOM) costs and separation of GPL and proprietary software code as required by companies' IP policies. This was accomplished while meeting necessary performance requirements and reducing development effort through extensive reuse of existing software.

The isolation provided by OKL4 when running concurrent operating systems on one processor is the same as running each operating system on a separate processor.

"OKL4's high performance communication mechanisms enabled Motorola to provide a seamless, integrated graphical user experience, bridging new Linux applications and existing legacy RTOS applications," said Steve Subar, CEO of Open Kernel Labs. "Today's news provides the latest evidence of how virtualization-based architecture can benefit handset OEMs and mobile phone users worldwide."

Meeting performance expectations is an important requirement for mobile handset design. "The use of OKL4 provides enough CPU performance to support a Linux environment with a rich GUI (graphical user interface) typical for a high-end CPU, while concurrently supporting the real-time processing needs of the modem software, all on a single ARM9 processor," said Gernot Heiser, CTO of Open Kernel Labs.

The industry is beginning to exploit the cost reduction and user experience advantages made possible by embedded virtualization. As the need for increased functionality merges with downward cost pressures in mobile handset design, the benefits of virtualization will continue to grow as new requirements are developed by handset OEMs, semiconductor suppliers, and handset OEMs.

Motorola Evoke QA4, a touchscreen slider phone, will be available Q2 2009.

Open Kernel Labs
Open Kernel Labs is the global leader in open source virtualization software for mobile devices, consumer electronics and embedded systems. Backed by the largest, independent team of microkernel developers, the OKL4 embedded hypervisor is deployed on more than 300 million mobile phones worldwide. Chipset suppliers, handset OEMs, and mobile network operators depend on OK Labs to deliver high performance solutions that decrease BOM cost, reduce complexity and speed time-to-market.

For information on the OK Community, please visit the Community Portal at Participants can join the Developer Mailing List at

Open Kernel Labs, OK Labs and Secure HyperCell™ are trademarks or registered trademarks of Open Kernel Labs or its affiliates in the U.S. and other countries. Other names may be trademarks of their respective owners.


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