Korean electronics firm Samsung has signed a licensing agreement with Acorn Computer that will put the Acorn RISC OS operating system on "hundreds of thousands" of the company's consumer appliances.
Under the terms of the agreement, Samsung will license the RISC OS for use on its range of consumer electronics devices. In addition, Samsung will license Acorn's TVCentric technology that lets RISC OS-based devices function as television set-top boxes. TVCentric, which includes graphics libraries and a graphical user interface for use specifically on television screens, will let any RISC OS-based device work as a set-top box, according to Acorn officials.
As the race to capture the set-top box operating system market heats up, signing up a hardware manufacturer as large as Samsung is a coup for UK-based Acorn. Acorn's RISC microprocessor-based operating system is going head-to-head with Microsoft's Windows CE, while its TVCentric technology competes with Microsoft's newly acuired WebTV.
However, Acorn did not say that the deal signed with Samsung is an exclusive one - and the electronics firm is no doubt exploring all of its options when it comes to operating systems for its consumer appliances and computing devices.