Transmeta takes stake in Chinese Linux developer

Transmeta has taken an unspecified equity stake in Chinese Linux developer Chinese 2000 Holdings as part of a deal to develop and market Transmeta's Midori Linux version of the Linux operating system in Asia, the company said in a statement.

Midori Linux was released by Transmeta in 2001 as a means of extending Linux support to embedded computing devices. Among its features, Midori Linux offers a power management capability that can conserve power and extend battery life in portable devices, a feature that complements the low-power characteristics of Transmeta's Crusoe processor line.

Already a relatively strong player in Japan, Transmeta hopes to raise its profile in other Asian markets, particularly in China. The company's deal with Chinese 2000 is centered on developing Linux support for Crusoe-based notebook PCs and embedded devices, such as set-top boxes, with a focus on China, Hong Kong, Macau and Taiwan, the statement said.

Under the terms of the agreement, Transmeta gets an unspecified equity stake in Chinese 2000, which is based in Shenzhen, China, and has developed its own Linux-based operating system, called Chinese 2000. Transmeta will also get a share of profits earned from the sale of Midori Linux services and support.

In addition to Chinese 2000, Transmeta has announced deals with two other Chinese computer makers, SVA Group in Shanghai and Tsinghua Unisplendour Group in Beijing, to use Crusoe processors in notebooks made for the Chinese market. However, neither of those deals contained a software component related to Midori Linux.

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