Nokia, ATI to Collaborate on Mobile Multimedia Tech

Nokia and ATI Technologies are partnering to try to simplify and drive the development of multimedia capabilities for Nokia phones, the companies said on Thursday.

ATI, a designer of graphics and digital-media processors for game consoles, computers and handheld devices, plans to offer a software development kit for mobile multimedia developers later this year. Together, ATI and Nokia will also host workshops to showcase the new environment to developers. The goal is to make the development of multimedia services easier by promoting open standards and also to inspire the development of mobile multimedia services such as 3-D gaming, mobile TV, video and music playback, they said.

"We want to make sure that with the Nseries devices, we’re pushing the multimedia experience," said Damian Stathonikos, a spokesman for Nokia. The company recently introduced new additions to the Nseries line of phones, highlighting multimedia capabilities such as video capture on some of the devices.

Nokia doesn’t use ATI processors in its phones and won’t say if it plans to in the future, Stathonikos said. Nokia commonly uses chips from Texas Instruments, among others. Products and capabilities developed using the environment that ATI and Nokia create can run on a variety of phones, not only handsets with ATI chips, Stathonikos said.

As part of their goal to simplify development, ATI and Nokia also want to enable developers to create content or services that can be accessed from a variety of devices without requiring developers to tweak the products for each device. Despite many historic efforts across the industry to simplify development this way, developers are still required to change their products to suit requirements of different handsets.

Even while focusing on products that will appeal to emerging markets, Nokia is also increasingly emphasizing its multimedia devices. In the first quarter this year, the Nokia N70 multimedia phone was the highest revenue generator for Nokia, the world’s largest handset maker said.

-Nancy Gohring, IDG News Service

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