17 January 2013

FAQ about Jolla & Sailfish OS

Jolla Sailfish FAQ
The curiosity about Jolla and their Sailfish OS is high. Thus it's no surprised that Jolla is being overwhelmed with questions about their operation system, product releases, compatibility with Nokia N9 and more.
We picked out some of the best frequently asked questions & answers from Jolla's official Twitter account and listened them here. 

A big thanks goes to all the Twitter users who asked those questions and of course Jolla to provide answers. Some questions & answers were modified without altering content/statements.

About Sailfish OS 

Jolla Sailfish OS Nokia N9
Sailfish OS on Nokia N9?
How is Sailfish OS different from Android? Both are described as open source operations systems.
Android is controlled by a single corporation and not developed in a way which would allow to contribute to the whole OS from start. 

Does Sailfish support Android applications? 
Yes, via Alien Dalvik by Myriad. Many Android applications will run unmodified on Jolla devices. To benefit from Sailfish's user interface, developers have to port their applications. 

Will Sailfish OS have the same menu icons as seen on the preview video? Feedback has been rather negative. 
Feedback has been clear and current video only shows a preview version and therefore not the final one. 

Will MeeGo Harmattan applications run on Sailfish OS?
No, but technically apps can be ported easily from Nokia N9. 

Will Sailfish OS be available on Nokia N9?
Not officially, but Jolla is ready to help the community in porting Sailfish to Nokia N9. The user experience won‘t be the same though as on an original Jolla devices.

"Many Android applications will run unmodified on Jolla devices. Technically Nokia N9 apps can be ported easily."

Will it be possible to install applications from 3rd party sources? 

Are we going to have haptic feedback (i.e vibration) with click sounds like used in MeeGo Harmattan? 
Yes, non-graphical feedback will be available.

Is Sailfish OS going to have a notification screen? 
Yes, there is a place for notifications which will feel quite familiar to MeeGo Harmattan users.

Will Sailfish OS have a similar standby screen like N9 which displays time and notifications? 
That feature is dependent on the display technology of the device.

Is Jolla going to provide a desktop applications, like Nokia Suite, to connect the smartphone for synchronization, updates, application management, etc.? 
Jolla will have a standard solution. Details will be published at a later moment.


About application development

Qt 5 Sailfish OS
Sailfish mentioned in official Qt 5 video 
When will the Sailfish SDK (software development kit) be available?
Announced for early Q1 in 2013. Jolla is working hard on the SDK. More information here.

What application framework will be used in Sailfish OS?
Focus on Qt & QML but also support for HTML5. At the moment Qt 4.8 (Qt 5 in future).

What about Python, Pyside and Pygame support?
Since Sailfish is based on Mer, support will be there - otherwise easily installable. 

Is Sailfish OS‘ package manager Debian or RPM based?

Will Sailfish have a similar security framework like Aegis (MeeGo Harmattan)?
No Aegis.

Will chroot (operation that changes root directory for the current running processes) be supported?

About Jolla

Having people in your team who previously worked on Nokia N9, will you provide any updates for that phone?
No, we can‘t do that. N9 is a Nokia product. 

Will Sailfish OS exclusively run on Jolla phones?
Sailfish OS is not exclusive. We will make devices that run Sailfish, but the operation system will be also licensable by others. ST-Ericsson for example has already announced support for Sailfish.

Do you also consider to produce tablet computers like Samsung Note or iPad?
Initially focus is on smartphones, but Sailfish will be available to others which can create various devices.  

"Sailfish OS won't be exclusive to Jolla phones. Various devices, including tablets, could be created by others."

When will Jolla launch their Sailfish phone?
Jolla plans to start selling their first device before summer 2013. Details are yet to be announced. 

In what countries will Jolla phones be available?
Product or market availability is not announced yet.

Will your phone be available on the US market?
Jolla's first focus on product distribution will be in Europe and Asia. US is not planned in the first stage.

Will Jolla have their own factory for the manufacturing of smartphone devices?
No, but we have partner for that.

Does Jolla have any IPO (Initial Public Offering;  corporations' shares to the public) plans?
Jolla is exploring various funding options - stay tuned for more news.

What are current partners/friends of Jolla?
D.Phone, DNA, ST-Ericsson, Myriad, Opera, Cyberport, Joiku, Invesdor, Tekes, Digia.

Will Jolla be present at the Mobile World Congress (MWC) in Barcelona in February?
No official answer, but possible.

There are various Jolla logos (website). Which is the official one?
That's part of the "unlike" idea. Check Jolla.com and click on the logo to comment/vote for your favourite one.

Vote/comment on your favourite Jolla logos by clicking on them


  1. Very happy that MeeGo stays alive with Jolla. The idea behind Harmattan was fantastic and it wouldn't be right if only Blackberry (who obviously stole many ideas!) benefit from it. Can't wait for Sailfish but would never abandon my N9 :-)

  2. Looks like I'll have to import it from EU :(

  3. Do we know if the first Jolla device will be a high end smartphone?

    I like the N9 for what is worth but the hardware was slightly outdated when released (unless the RAM).


    1. Hi, thanks for your comment. Hopefully. Jolla hasn't announced yet any hardware specifications. What we know is, that Sailfish should also run on older hardware (like N9, N950 etc).

    2. That's my only problem with Maemo and harmattan devices. They where outdated before they hit the market.
      I loved my N900 and N950 but they where just to slow.
      I hope Jolla comes with some quad core above 1.5 GHz, and 2 GB RAM for their phones. Anything else will be outdated in 2013. Something like snapdragon S4 pro or Tegra 4 later this year. That seems to be realistic.

    3. I found a kind of answer:

      The Wall Street Journal spoke with Jolla’s co-founder Sami Pienimaki about the start-up’s expansion plans.


      Mr. Pienimaki: It makes no sense to go to the low-end. We will kill ourselves going there. (....) So it makes sense to focus on the premium segment of the market. (...)


    4. @XenGi Agree. The hardware is quiet an important factor, also marketing-wise. Even people who don't understand well what GHzs and multi cores mean, understand that a higher "number" is usually better. The only advantage I see of N9's single core processor is the probably longer battery life - but I've never researched the real impact of those processors on a mobilephone's battery.

      Seing that ST-Ericsson is listed at one of Jolla's partner, we might something from them in the future Jolla phone? - http://www.theregister.co.uk/2013/01/11/st_ericsson_unveils_novathor_l8580_lte_soc/

    5. N900 wasn't outdated when it 1st came out, certainly not as bad as the N9 was, but overall support from Nokia was quite poor.

  4. I wished we could install N9 apps on Sailfish OS. IMO it's more important to get those apps on the system than Android ones. Hopefully Jolla provides good guides on how to port N9 apps.

    I also wonder what map service Jolla will use? Nokia is advertising hard their multi-platform idea with HERE maps...so why not have them on Sailfish OS? It would make sense, but we all know that Stephen Elop hates MeeGo and everything related to it - that makes me pessimistic about here maps on Sailfish :(

  5. Good to see Opera being a partner of Jolla - assuming it's the Opera browser one. Maybe Sailfish browser will be powered by Opera? If I remember right, Opera was already interested in a cooperation with Nokia but got rejected. I would welcome Opera a lot.

  6. At least you could discuss your questions with TMO community first, since you obviously took some of them from the community list. These are simple decency rules.

    1. There are no rules. Jolla/Sailfish doesn't belong to anyone and the world doesn't turn around TMO.
      But most important - I quote from our own article:
      "We picked out some of the best frequently asked questions on Jolla's official Twitter account and listened them here."

      All the questions and replies can be found on Jolla's Twitter account. It has nothing to do with TMO. So please have some manners - Sailfish/MeeGo/Mer/Maemo supports need to work together, not against each other.

  7. @shmerl +1, I was thinking the same thing!

  8. If you're being 100% honest about not gaining ideas for Qns & concerns/criticisms from TMO, then fair enough.
    But if it has been a partial (or more) source of inspiration, then the very least you can do is reference that.
    (ideally though you'd chose to contribute to that initiative, rather than sprout "yet another" one)

    1. TMO hasn't been the idea, inspiration nor the source for that. We are very active on Twitter and belong to the accounts Jolla added first to their list. Furthermore there isn't time for us to follow every single thread on TMO. What's even the problem? Everything we wrote down had already been answered.

    2. No problem, you can calm down now... ;)
      It's best though that we all coordinate & speak with one voice, & maemo.org is by far the single-biggest representative of the community.
      So if there's any initiative to have a ongoing dialogue with Jolla/Sailfish, it's best that it's developed, coordinated, & delivered from there.
      That doesn't mean others can't simply gather Qns that have already been asked/answered.
      In fact it's helpful when that's done, as then we have a list of what's cleared-up, & can omit those items from the community's live dialogue.


    3. Can you please approve my latest response to you, doesn't seem to have been allowed through, thank-you.

    4. Sorry... Spam filter overreacts sometimes :) Thanks for your kind answer. We've always been very respectful towards various community websites - therefore a certain frustration is here, when there all the sudden are attacks without any reason. I totally agree with what you said. But there was no dialogue between us and Jolla about that topic. We just opened our eyes & dug for information which already has been there for days, weeks or even months. There's nothing wrong with that.

      All the best.

    5. Totally agreed/understood....
      Feel free to jump into the current initiative (that's been going for many mths) & contribute/help.
      Everyone's input (whatever form that takes) helps...

      All the best.

  9. @AllAboutN9 Good reading - ridiculous discussion. Normally I don't comment (sorry!) but I must say that for me (a potential Jolla client) I want to read such content - may Sailfish rule 2013 (or '14...)
    PS could you have a look at my WiFi problem (email)? Thanks a lot.

    1. "Normally I don't comment (sorry!) but I must say that for me (a potential Jolla client) I want to read such content"

      And such content can easily be re-posted (with it's own spin/analysis) from where it's being centrally coordinated, that was the only point being made...
      Ofc as this content was already answered directly by Jolla, there's no need to wait for it to be asked/answered/re-posted via the central coordination point.

    2. I don't understand what you mean - my English is not the best. What centrally coordinated? This is just a reading, an a summary from Meego fans for Meego fans.

    3. If you read the convo I had with allaboutn9 (this thread) you will understand.

      "This is just a reading, an a summary from Meego fans for Meego fans."

      Yes, I know...

    4. I read all - else I would not comment. Yes, but I understand the Author, not you (and your friend). I keep the opinion: ridiculus! Also big Newspapers like http://derstandard.at/1353206918664/Joll-praesentiert-erstmals-mobiles-Betriebssystem-Sailfish-OS publish all the time news about Jolla/Sailfish - or in English: http://blogs.wsj.com/digits/2012/12/28/qa-jolla-aims-to-be-alternative-to-android/ Should they also use your "centrally coordinated" what-ever-it-is? Otherwise they get complains?

    5. @photoerich - hope you could fix the WiFi issue. If not pls respond via mail.

  10. ^Yeah, you clearly have a reading comprehension fail going on, sadly no-one but you can help with that.

    All the best.

  11. @ Jed & co: Y'alls input about Jolla is great, your behavior here doubtable. Next time be a bit smarter... Anyways, back to topic:
    It won't be easy for Jolla with Ubuntu mobile and Firefox on the launching pad - the competition will be big. Not to forget about BB10 which shares a lot of MeeGo Harmattan's UI. Being a complete newcomer, Jolla needs to gain a userbase first. This could be partially done by making Sailfish available to existing N9 owners. Jolla is certainly aware of that, but understandably they don't announce any official support - why would they want to be responsable for maintaining software on hardware which is outdated and not even theirs? Personally I don't care that much and feel the hype of having Sailfish on N9 is to big - especially thinking of all the apps which won't be there from the beginning. I'll buy a Jolla phone once it's available and am certainly curious about the near future :-)

  12. Behaviour doubtable, righto buddy, another reading comprehension fail it seems.
    Any special reason why you're spamming the board twice...

    And no, Jolla must not focus a large chunk of their resources towards supporting Sailfish on N9(?0), that would be very dumb.
    The reality when it comes to Sailfish for N(9?0), has already been explained by them countless times.
    The fact that people still don't get it, never ceases to amaze...

    1. Yeah sure, I'm the one spamming that discussion... You really need to learn to communicate a bit more appropriately. I've only talked about competition, not about any "threat" - or shared programming interface for apps, or whatever it is could be a benefit for all of them, you're right.

      "And no, Jolla must not focus a large chunk of their resources..." Did I say something different? I even stated my opinion about that. Read again over pls. My other point concerns users, not devs. Jolla endorsed several times how they port Sailfish on various, existing hardware - same as Ubuntu mobile representative confirmed. Jolla would talk differently if it wouldn't be in their interest. A company would be dumb though, to officially announce such support - Jolla wasn't and communicated it right. This method has been practiced in various industries. And in case you don't share that opinion with me - you simply don't have to, I don't expect that.

      And even if we'll never see Sailfish on N9 (what as mentioned I don't even care about): Don't bash people who have believes or hope for something. Hope and loyalty have been the factors which kept the hole N9 community alive. Don't try to be a such a negative mr know-it-all.

      Things are not perfect for us Meego/Symbian loyalists. But remember? We all want the same...else you're at the wrong place anyways.

  13. FFOS is geared for a much lower-end segment, plus the dev env is very unattractive for many devs who want "true" native dev.
    Ubuntu doesn't need to be a "threat", if we're lucky Ubuntu/Sailfish(Nemo)/Plasma will end-up being complementary, rather than direct competitors.
    BBX again isn't directly comparable, similar dev technology, but VERY different dev methodology, hopefully that'll change.

    1. Agree with all of that. Good thinking - of course we again have to differentiate between user and dev. Heard similar things about development for BB - especially now where many Qt experienced devs have a try on the cascade interface. The hole philosophy behind that product is a different one. I look forward to see how the market will react on RIM's full touchscreen phone.

  14. This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

  15. Inappropriate/irrelevant comments will be deleted from now on. This applies to all comments. Thank you for your understanding.

  16. jolla is linux or symbian , i hope that can use in nokia n9

  17. Huh? Jolla is a hw/sw company, if you're referring to Sailfish it has zero to do with Symbian & it's not Linux, Linux is just a kernel, Sailfish is a complete OS stack. Sailfish won't be available for the N9, there may be a community version of it available "eventually". But if you want a fully polished/slick & non-compromised experience, you'll have to buy hw from a Sailfish_Alliance member, no free rides w/a Nokia device.