Jolla’s tablet is now available to the public for pre-order. Customers can reserve one of these tablets from a limited batch. The tablet is scheduled for dispatch at the end of October.
Jolla’s tablet is the world’s first crowd-funded tablet. It claims to offer several revolutionary features that will set it apart from the tablets that dominate the mobile market.
Jolla is a Finnish technology firm that is devoted to creating both hardware and software. The tablet and its Sailfish operating system are the product of a team of engineers who previously worked at Finland’s other mobile giant, Nokia.
What separates this tablet from the pack is its operating system. The tablet will not be signing on to Android, iOS or even Windows. Instead, it will use the in-house operating system Sailfish. Sailfish is an open-source Linux based operating system. This could prove unfamiliar to many users, however, users will still be able to use major Android applications and any software issues can still be handled by Computer Fixperts or other technicians.
Open source software is perfect for the mobile platform. It is easily modified which opens the door to greater innovation. Developers can create new and creative apps that are not required to fit within a repressive framework like apps developed for iOS are.
Those who cite Apple’s hegemonic hold on the mobile device industry are wise to remember that Android was originally open source. It was this freedom that drew crowds away from Apple and Blackberry and towards a system with more freedom.
Jolla is also developing relationships with emerging world markets. The company may be in negotiations with the Russian Ministry of Communications to become the nation’s primary mobile operating system. This is rumored to be part of a plan to approach Brazil, India, China and South Africa.
Jolla’s tablet offers a second and significant value proposition. It is significantly cheaper than other tablets on the market. The innovative, open source features and the low price would be attractive to emerging markets who long for mobile data but cannot yet afford the prices mandated by Apple and other manufacturers.
Apple, Google and Microsoft should sit up and pay close attention when Jolla reaches customers’ hands in October. A crowd-funded tablet available to the global masses may prove to be a real competitor in mobile devices.