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[News] Russia to help Tizen and Sailfish Developers

asked 2015-02-12 10:36:30 +0200

sifartech gravatar image

updated 2015-02-18 20:22:57 +0200

Russia is concerned about Android's and ios's dominance and will "help" Tizen and Sailfish developers.

The Minister tweeted that developers will receive grants in order to port their existing Android and iOS apps to the independant Tizen and Sailfish Operating Systems. Nikolai Nikiforov also gave assurances that Tizen and Sailfish OS Smartphones will soon be available to consumers in Russia.

(Source: TizenExperts)

I sincerely hope Jolla will follow this up and get in touch with the Minister to chalk out a cooperative plan that should benefit us all.

Some proposal suggestions that can be made by Jolla:

  1. Propose to provide a Russian translation of the Sailfish developers guide / manual.
  2. Propose to help with "Internationalization and localization" of Russian apps so that they can have "global exposure".
  3. Propose to provide (free?) Jolla phones and tablets to the developers receiving grants.
  4. Propose to provide online video tutorials (in association with the Qt Company) for students.

More ideas?

Update: Jolla representative(s) attended a meeting with the Russians and are hearing them out. (Thanks for the update, @virgi26)

Other sources -
Russia To Pay Local Devs To Migrate Apps To Tizen, Sailfish
Russian Government Offers Grants to Open-Source Tizen, Sailfish Developers
Russia Against Android, iOS Domination: Will Pay Devs to Migrate Apps to Tizen, Sailfish

Edited the title and post to make it less "political" - so that WE don't waste time discussing politics, and just focus on the substance of the announcement.emphasized text

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sounds like a job for @coderus

r0kk3rz ( 2015-02-12 10:41:24 +0200 )edit

no, i have no iOS and Android apps to port.

coderus ( 2015-02-12 10:49:26 +0200 )edit

And maybe some incentive for Jolla to really think about Jolla Smartphone 2 too!

sifartech ( 2015-02-12 10:50:52 +0200 )edit

@coderus - That's ok. Just clone / develop some other popular Android / ios app for Sailfish. Just guessing here, but if you have the skills they may back you ...

sifartech ( 2015-02-12 10:53:30 +0200 )edit

Interesting news, but I think Jolla should just take note and continue doing their thing, which is making great phones and Sailfish OS. The last thing I would want is for Jolla to officially work with or make partnerships or be affiliated in any way with any government or political party anywhere in the world.

shfit ( 2015-02-12 11:14:08 +0200 )edit

10 Answers

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answered 2015-02-12 10:43:50 +0200

coderus gravatar image

Russia supporting developers who porting their existing apps written for iOS and Android to Tizen and Sailfish. I marked importand words with bold for you.

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Yeah. Here's hoping Jolla gets in touch with the Minister / Ministry and gets this rolling! (Should be really helpful for the community, even if it is in an advisory capacity).

sifartech ( 2015-02-12 10:47:02 +0200 )edit

So they would be unwilling to help existing russian sailfishos developers continue their work? Seems odd that they wouldnt use people like yourself as part of that strategy, either from a training perspective or from an app development perspective

r0kk3rz ( 2015-02-12 10:52:02 +0200 )edit

@r0kk3rz - I am guessing it could be because of the lack of funds - the Russian economy isn't quite healthy. We have no idea how much they would be willing to commit to this project. So I am sure they would want to invest in only tried and tested developers who have already proven their mobile development skills. Ofcourse, this is where Jolla can step in - if they can convince the Russian to work with them, they could offer alternate suggestions on the development strategy to be adopted. And perhaps others like @coderus could also be a part of this project and benefit ...

sifartech ( 2015-02-12 11:02:48 +0200 )edit

Oh, you don't have to worry about this. Russia may not have money for health, education, social purposes, but it always spending billions to scence, technologies projects, even if it's more likely to fail.

coderus ( 2015-02-12 11:07:03 +0200 )edit

@coderus - Yeah, I guess that is true. When your president visited India some time back, he mentioned that Russia was working on its own open source unix / linux OS and had invited India to join in its development. But then didn't hear anything about it so far ... and I guess North Korea and China have beaten them to it. :) But they have the right idea ... we need viable, open source alternatives.

sifartech ( 2015-02-12 11:13:58 +0200 )edit

answered 2015-05-17 13:54:31 +0200

Neo gravatar image

New meeting in Moscow (May, 15th) and some ideas: "... possibilities for creation of international industrial consortium for development of alternative software products on the base of open operating system and relying on collaboration with BRICS-countries..."

See http://minsvyaz.ru/en/events/33225/

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Thanks for the update. This tidbit was especially interesting - "Sailfish is almost an international company today. It is owned not only by Finnish, but also by Russian and Chinese shareholders. We hope that strategic Indian, Brazilian and South African investors will also join Sailfish soon."

sifartech ( 2015-05-18 01:44:44 +0200 )edit

As an Indian seeing this russian announcement about a Finnish company makes me Happy! BTW Nokia was the market leader in India . People who bought Jolla in India really wanted the Nokia gang to succeed.

pavi ( 2015-05-19 01:33:56 +0200 )edit

answered 2015-02-18 14:20:04 +0200

virgi26 gravatar image

updated 2015-02-18 14:24:57 +0200

apparently there were a meeting with Jolla today (and few days earlier they had same meeting with Samsung regarding Tizen)

http://minsvyaz.ru/ru/events/32670/ (in russian)

Interestingly enough it was not just some people from goverment, but many top managers from leading russian IT companies (yandex, kaspesky and many more)

breifly: they talked about sailfish, possible cooperation, and other stuff

quote: earlier we decided to concentrate on more detailed reviewing of possibilities using open source software as opportunity to achieve technological independance of Russia

Personaly, i think it is a good thing. If they support Jolla and developers it will give community a huge boost. And it's only up to Jolla not to make any closed source agreements to support russia in any way or whatever. Just stay away from politics.

PS: but i guess Jolla will have to go full open source.

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Not to mention that russia has lots of great developers what could seriously help the app ecosystem.

lispy ( 2015-02-18 14:22:31 +0200 )edit

Are you know Kasperkry Lab, Acronis, Parallels? What are you think where employer of this company live?

hyper_sonic ( 2015-02-18 15:24:05 +0200 )edit

Your link is also avialabe in english: http://minsvyaz.ru/en/events/32670/ :)

Alex ( 2015-02-18 15:24:54 +0200 )edit

Thanks for the update - the Russian initiative seems to be at a much larger scale than I thought. Hopefully this is fruitful and we see some real competition soon ...

sifartech ( 2015-02-18 20:03:03 +0200 )edit

answered 2015-02-13 13:32:10 +0200

midnightoil gravatar image

Even if there is some substance to this, as opposed to being propaganda / a fund which will quickly disappear into the pockets of kleptocrats, I see little real benefit for Sailfish.

Sailfish still has an absolutely minute base of users, and still no paid apps. So unless these payments or subsidies are enormous, or the devs very poor, then there's still very little incentive to port to Sailfish.

Tizen on the other hand will see 10s of millions of TVs and smartwatches sold this year, and who knows how many phones, and they have paid apps from day one.

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This is why Jolla should be involved in this initiative from the start. I would add that what maybe peanuts to you (European or American), maybe a lot of money for Russians and Asians in developing countries. That's one of the reason why most freelance developers are from these countries.

sifartech ( 2015-02-13 14:45:44 +0200 )edit

@midnightoil Agree that this reported "news" is probably just cyber propaganda with litle (or no) benefir for SailfishOS..on the contrary, only grave dangers if reading too much into this..

@sifartech Jolla should definitely not get involved or participate in possible governmental propaganda nor take any sides in the eastern Europe conflict between Russia and EU/U.S nor seek funding based on such "news" sources..

foss4ever ( 2015-02-14 00:33:33 +0200 )edit

@jjaone - Your strong views on this apart, if Jolla aims to be a global business these kind of government interactions might be unavoidable. This announcement is good for Russian Jolla supporters as it could mean they will have more apps to use on their phone - it's as simple as that. Like I have mentioned elsewhere, in BRICS and other developing countries government grants for such things are not really uncommon at all.

sifartech ( 2015-02-14 01:35:25 +0200 )edit

answered 2015-02-12 11:22:31 +0200

tortoisedoc gravatar image

Battle? Did not know this would be a war :P

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Politically, it is a serious issue. America / American business are slowly trying to change their business model to the "rent a software" model. The US government likes this - apart from the profits, it also gives them more control. Technology denial will take a new meaning - suddenly your software may stop working if your country gets into a tiff with the US, or the ebooks you have rented or bought may suddenly get wiped out automatically from your ereader or ipad. Not to mention that they will have access to any data generated / stored on the "cloud" - it makes spying so much easier when you willing store data on US owned servers. And so on ...

sifartech ( 2015-02-12 11:32:15 +0200 )edit

Not that the "buy a software" model would prevent any of that happening.

pichlo ( 2015-02-12 14:23:16 +0200 )edit

Let's just hope the current tensions between "the West" and "the East" spark a battle on who gives more funds to independent developers. I'd rather not like to see Jolla/Sailfish getting utilized by either side alone.

JonasG ( 2015-02-12 15:06:50 +0200 )edit

@JonasG - I am of the opinion that Jolla and its community should take advantage of the tension on both side and use that to fulfil its own agenda. Politics 101 ... :)

sifartech ( 2015-02-13 03:46:22 +0200 )edit

@pichlo - Yeah, open source would be best. But unless the softwares bought have a "kill switch" to destroy them, it does afford us users more control. Legally too, things would be in different level.

sifartech ( 2015-02-13 04:05:52 +0200 )edit

answered 2015-02-12 15:52:55 +0200

foss4ever gravatar image

updated 2015-02-12 15:54:17 +0200

This same "news" was posted in Jolla Pionewr Fans FB-group already some days ago, and I'd tend to think that there is really nothing (or hardly any) substantial to get exited about in this "governmental" announed commitment to support #Tizen or #SailfishOS, but more likely the use of tech. industry competition and global financial market stance by Russia as a info/cyberwar battlefront against maybe U.S.and European coalition in regards to the instable situation in eastetn Europe currrently.

image description

Of course, I see no problem with open tech devs and enthusiasts from all over the world to support and advocate #open techs, platforms and #unlike communities, but mixing internatioinal political instabilities and governmental entities to these matters should IMO be avoided, and at the minimum, such announcements taken with a grain of salt; international politics and open technologies don't mix well :(

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Paul Wallace - No to politics and then few posts about European Union.

cropas ( 2015-02-13 00:46:47 +0200 )edit

FYI - in BRICS (and many other countries), scientific research and technological development is heavily aided by the Government. So culturally many of us from these country don't see anything wrong at all in this announcement or in accepting this money. And if Jolla wants to be a successful global business, it will need to find ways to accommodate the cultural needs of various countries while ensuring that they don't violate their core values in the process.

sifartech ( 2015-02-13 05:30:26 +0200 )edit

answered 2015-05-18 21:11:19 +0200

bilgy_no1 gravatar image

I would love to see some 'official' Jolla statement on these plans and developments. Especially on how independent they can remain in light of the politically motivated involvement of Russia and other nations. I'm not trying to get away from US controlled platforms, only to find myself trapped in a Russian one...

I wouldn't dismiss any support from Russia straight away, but I am a little concerned/suspicious about any government involvement. The news today mentioned an open source platform based on Sailfish. Does this mean there will be a fork? How will this affect the core Sailfish platform? Can Jolla and the community remain in control of development, privacy policy? Can Sailfish OS remain free from government monitoring? Etc.

Of course, Jolla can use all the support they can get, and they have to be opportunistic as a small business. I just hope that they can remain true to their ideals and the appeal of an unlike approach to their current customers.

I think Jolla should provide us with their vision on these issues.

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I'd imagine this is exactly what Jolla needs, to be able to license SFOS to other parties.

What do you care the licensee is a government, it means there will be money coming in the house, which I believe is needed in any company.

juiceme ( 2015-05-18 22:50:03 +0200 )edit

@juiceme We don't even know what the nature of the discussion was, so we don't know whether any government will license the OS. It could well be that Russia takes the code from sailfish.org and build its own OS from there.

And concerns about government involvement in the development of the OS are not unfounded. I think the Snowden revelations make that clear. It's not like the Russian FSB wouldn't do the same things the NSA are doing if they have the chance.

My point is: Jolla should provide some information about these developments, so that we can really form an opinion. I already saw a #stopjolla or something like that, so there's clearly some discomfort with this news. It could be that there's no problem at all, and that this will strengthen Jolla to everyone's advantage. If that's the case, Jolla can inform us about that, right?

bilgy_no1 ( 2015-05-18 23:49:27 +0200 )edit

answered 2015-06-02 16:29:13 +0200

mariner gravatar image

Given Russia's views on freedom, privacy and propaganda I hope Jolla will install an iron curtain to protect the rest of us from interference. Perhaps we need this in the UK as well now our own government has given away our internet freedoms. Seriously, we have to be careful to retain the principles and security of Open Source systems.

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We need this in every country on this planet. The development concerning privacy in Europe and US is at an extremely sad state. Despite the cruel Snowden-files, no governement really seems to care here - in case of France, UK and Switzerland they even work into the other direction (other countries probably as well). Our countries are no longer social-institutions, but business-institutions, where the individual person doesn't count anymore. I hope Jolla does everything to protect our privacy...but more I hope that people finally wake up and don't let our governements kill their rights!

molan ( 2015-06-02 19:20:11 +0200 )edit

answered 2015-02-13 00:03:13 +0200

simo gravatar image

We could have a short discussion about if TJC is a place to post news at all, and if it is, what kind of news we'd maybe like to see here. Short opening: At least not ones related to politics, please!

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Sure. Please go ahead and create a discussion on this and I'll chime in with my thoughts too. FYI - in BRICS (and many other countries), scientific research and technological development is heavily aided by the Government. So culturally many of us from these country don't see anything wrong at all in this announcement or in accepting this money. So where you and others see "politics", I as an Indian, just see another "government initiative" to foster the development of another technology. (And like any government initiative, this too will have a 50-50 chance of succeeding / fialing).

sifartech ( 2015-02-13 05:35:28 +0200 )edit

Maybe short enough to be discussed here?. IMO, confirmed news which might have affect on Jolla phone owners/buyers might be welcome. But from another POI we already have channels for these within this community, and TJC is more a QA service, but also tried to be used as a bug reporting platform, polling platform and HowTo guide already. Opinions?

simo ( 2015-02-13 08:21:03 +0200 )edit

@simo - A separate thread would be better. Anyway, as you pointed out, we already use TJC for discussion and polling too. So in my opinion, the current practice is good enough - let the community moderate itself. Some topics would be interesting to you, some to me. If it isn't interesting to us, we are not even going to bother to down vote it and just ignore it. And really irrelevant topics just seem to die their own death, from what I've observed.

sifartech ( 2015-02-13 09:42:54 +0200 )edit

"let the community moderate itself" Well that's true, and it's working :) Also, people disturbed by any news can always add tag "news" to their ignored tag list. However, posting unconfirmed news might not be a good idea - looking at the original source (personal tweet), this one doesn't qualify as "news" at this point.

simo ( 2015-02-13 09:55:48 +0200 )edit

In my experience, high-ranking politicians are always careful of their words. Jolla should try to contact him / his ministry and get a clarification.

sifartech ( 2015-02-13 10:14:11 +0200 )edit

answered 2015-02-13 00:06:30 +0200

wazd gravatar image

To support my previous statement I should further explain, that culture of using twitter accounts by ministers in Russia is different. These are just purely private opinion of a private person, not a Ministry of Communications statement in any way. So it's quite strange that nobody has even asked that guy for a comment (like news makers usually do) prior to posting "news". There's no politics or some cyber war plot, just a young useless guy saying things on twitter, big deal. Sorry for all these false hopes, guys, move along.

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Russia claims on channel 5 of Russian TV that they can be in Helsinki within less than 24h. So when they will pop in to Finland they can decide if they want use Sailfish or not.


cropas ( 2015-02-13 00:57:01 +0200 )edit

Reading the various articles on this subject, I too felt that this was a personal opinion of a Minister who is an advocate for open source. And that is why Jolla should get in touch with the Minister with their ideas on how to best achieve the stated goal of creating incentives for, and aiding, Russian developers to create apps for Sailfish (and Tizen).

sifartech ( 2015-02-13 03:59:57 +0200 )edit

@cropas it does not take 24h, there's a direct train from st. Petersburg to Helsinki four times a day and the trip takes just a tad over 3 hours :)

juiceme ( 2015-02-13 09:11:07 +0200 )edit

for T-90 tank, not train

cropas ( 2015-02-13 09:17:21 +0200 )edit

Coming by train is lot better; it is more comfortable, quicker and energy efficient. (do you have any idea what the mileage for T90 is!)

Also for some reason the general reception is much friendlier in the travelling-by-train scenario... :)

juiceme ( 2015-02-13 09:32:32 +0200 )edit
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Asked: 2015-02-12 10:36:30 +0200

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Last updated: Jun 02 '15