What is this OpenHarmony-based operating system, Oniro OS led by Europe

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Back in October 2021, Eclipse Foundation, Europe’s largest open source organization, unveiled a new project, the Oniro operating system, which aims to provide an alternative to existing IoT and edge operating systems.#

Mike Milinkovic, executive director of Eclipse, said that Oniro OS will provide a truly community-driven open source solution. It is reported that Oniro is an independent open-source project based on the open-source distributed operating system OpenHarmony.

OpenHarmony is a major open source project operated by the OpenAtom Foundation in China. Back in September 2021, Eclipse and OpenAtom announced a partnership, and according to a joint statement, Mike Milinkovich and Tao Yang, Chairman of the Board of Directors of the OpenAtom Foundation, signed a strategic cooperation agreement to further promote the development and adoption of OpenHarmony.

According to reports, the Oniro operating system uses a multi-core architecture:

  • The Linux Yocto kernel allows the operating system to run on larger embedded devices, such as the Raspberry Pi;
  • The Zephyr kernel allows the operating system to run on devices with highly resource-constrained resources, such as coffee makers or thermostats.

With the ability to run the same operating system on different classes of devices, Oniro will provide the ideal solution to support IoT, machine economy, edge, mobile, and other “next-generation devices”:

  • Adopting Oniro OS will have a more seamless experience than today’s operating systems;
  • The ability for devices to connect and share data directly with each other enables a higher degree of interoperability than is available today;
  • The data exchanged between devices can flow directly to each other rather than always through the cloud, enabling a low-latency architecture that is inherently more secure and private.

To promote the governance of the Oniro device ecosystem, the Eclipse Foundation has also established a new dedicated working group. Milinkovich said the Eclipse Foundation’s working group structure provides vendor neutrality and a legal framework that allows for transparent, equal collaboration between companies.

The founding members of the Oniro working group include experts from Huawei, Linaro (an organization focused on open source software development for the ARM platform), and the Seco Group, an Italian manufacturer of IoT devices. Applications are expected to start in the IoT and IIoT space, and as the community grows and has a roadmap in place, apps for mobile devices will be born.

“To the best of my knowledge, this is the first time that three open source organizations (Eclipse, OpenAtom, and Linaro) have collaborated on a single technology.” Milinkovich said.

Milinkovich calls on all companies, academics, experts or individuals interested in “next-generation devices” to seize the opportunity to participate in Oniro at the earliest possible stage. Interested parties can subscribe to the Oniro Working Group newsletter to stay up to date with it.

Mike Milinkovich, Executive Director of the Eclipse Foundation, said, “Oniro is the right open source project. It represents a unique opportunity to develop and host next-generation operating systems to support the future of mobile, IoT, machine economy, edge, and many other markets. ”

To facilitate the governance of the Oniro device ecosystem, the Eclipse Foundation has also established a new dedicated working group that provides a vendor-neutral legal framework that enables transparent and equal collaboration between companies. Founding members of the Oniro working group include Huawei, the UK-based open-source organization Linaro, and Italian IoT device manufacturer Seco.

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As part of this effort, there is a convergence on OpenAtom OpenHarmony October 2023 codebase with version 4.0 on both Oniro OS recently by Eclipse Foundation horizontal integration on December 6, 2023 with vendors and partners, while Huawei’s consumer vertical integration operating system, HarmonyOS exclusively for Huawei ecosystem flagship devices only with latest version since August 2023. As HarmonyOS NEXT emerges, it is hoped that Oniro OS will play a significant role in the development of international OpenHarmony based operating systems and exposure of it, alongside boosting Huawei’s commercial HarmonyOS NEXT iteration underlying operating system for HarmonyOS powered devices outside of China. In hopes to attract developers using open-source and Apple’s style model of closed source simuatenously for interoperability and compatibility of increasingly connected devices we are moving towads.

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Sources:

Introducing Oniro: A Vendor Neutral, Open Source OS for Next-Gen Devices | Eclipse Foundation Staff Blogs

The Eclipse Foundation Partners with China’s OpenAtom on a New Operating System — ADTmag