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PreCentral: Phoenix's Open webOS-on-Android project gets past the lock screen

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Phoenix's Open webOS-on-Android project gets past the lock screen

While upstart Phoenix International Communications hopes to someday put out their own hardware running our favored mobile operating system (we'll give you one guess as to what that operating system is), in the meantime they're focusing on a more-attainable project: getting Open webOS running as an app on existing Android hardware, without having to make modifications to the Android device itself.

Where the WebOS Ports homebrew team is working on porting Open webOS to the Samsung Galaxy Nexus as a separate operating system, Phoenix wants to run Open webOS on top of Android, giving users the option to run both operating systems simultaneously instead of booting into one or the other. There are advantages to both approaches, so we're happy to have the potential for choices to be offered.

Several weeks ago we brought you the first look at what Phoneix was cooking up, showing off webOS opening as an app on Android. There was a problem, though: they couldn't get past the lockscreen, and attempting to do so crashed the OS/app. So at that point in mid-October, it was more of a proof-of-concept and work-in-progress than anything else. Fast-forward to today and the Phoenix team has made progress, as shown in the video after the break.

Not only can they now get past the lock screen, but webOS actually runs on their test Samsung Nexus S. It's not perfect - there's still a lot of work to be done - as the stuttering and sluggishness driven by the lack of working hardware acceleration shows, but it's progress. Phoenix says that the project is still in "pre-alpha" status; like the WebOS Ports port, it has to be launched via Terminal commands, though eventually Phoenix does plan to implement a launcher icon for the Android side of things. Phoenix has also borrowed some elements from the open source work of the WebOS Ports team, including the swanky phone-sized virtual keyboard they unearthed.

Phoenix right now is entirely volunteer-driven, and as always they're looking for people willing to contribute their skills. Specifically, they're in need of people experienced with working on the Linux Kernel and operating system (both Open webOS and Android share a common Linux base), Android itself, and the GNU toolchain. If you're so inclined, go ahead and hit up the source link below.

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