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All to develop OpenGL for the mobile space

This week, Apple, Dell and Google have all joined the Khronos Group, the organization that develops and oversees the OpenGL graphics standard. The group has been focusing a great deal on bringing OpenGL graphics to the mobile space and developing an API suitable for such devices as handhelds. While OpenGL is used in a wide variety of scenarios, the most interesting development mentioned on Khronos' website is the mobile phone. According to Khronos:

This significant growth in membership, together with the announcement made today that the OpenGL ARB has voted to bring control of the OpenGL standard under Khronos, reinforces Khronos’ position as the preeminent body creating open, royalty-free standards for the authoring and acceleration of dynamic media on a wide variety of platforms. Khronos has extensive membership from all aspects of the industry including CPU and media silicon providers, operating system vendors, system and handset OEMS, middleware vendors, games and application developers and wireless carriers.

As mobile graphics processors become increasingly more powerful, and mobile phones become increasingly more capable, a host of companies are looking towards OpenGL to be the standard for mobile graphics. The new standard for mobile phones is called OpenGL ES.

Apple's involvement with Khronos brings up an interesting topic about the future of the iPod and the future of some of Apple's unannounced products. DailyTech reported earlier last month that Apple dropped significant hints that a mobile communications device was brewing at Apple headquarters. Apple's chief financial officer Peter Oppenheimer stated during a conference call that "we do not think that the phones that are available today make the best music players. We think the iPod is. But over time, that is likely to change, and we are not sitting around doing nothing."

Apple joining the Khronos group for development of a mobile OpenGL API could be more than mere coincidence. Earlier in July, DailyTech reported that NVIDIA allegedly entered into an agreement with Apple to work on next generation iPod devices. Neil Trevett, the president of the Khronos Group, is also the vice president of embedded solutions at NVIDIA. Trevett said "Khronos has now has the widespread industry participation needed to effectively leverage synergies between established and emerging media platforms -- and so create new market opportunities for both."

Dell on the other hand is reported to have stopped production and development of its PDAs. According to reports, Dell is diverting funding into notebook development. Dell has not released any information on why the funds moved and if we will be seeing more mobile devices from the company.




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