Jolla Ltd., a Finnish maker of mobile devices and open-source software, is offering an alternative mobile operating system as it ramps up its foray into the Chinese market.
“Quite a number of smartphone manufacturers in the mainland are interested in Jolla,” co-founder and chairman Antti Saarnio told the Hong Kong Economic Journal.
The company will use Hong Kong as a springboard to China by initially franchising its products before going into mobile content and services including shopping channels.
Helsinki-based La Jolla makes the Sailfish mobile operating system and develops middleware for vendors under the open source alliance.
Saarnio said Sailfish will not collect personal data and will allow users to choose whether to disclose private information when switching from other operating systems.
La Jolla has tapped domestic telecom carriers such as 3 Hong Kong, the mobile division of Hutchison Telecommunications Hong Kong Holdings Ltd. (00215.HK), to market and sell its products online.
In 2013, Hong Kong billionaire Li Ka-shing, who controls Hutchison Telecom, predicted that a third operating system would soon compete with Apple’s iOS and Google’s Android.
Li has been widely mentioned as an investor in Jolla.
Saarnio declined to comment whether Li has a stake in the company but an unnamed source told the Hong Kong Economic Journal Li is not a shareholder of Jolla.
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