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Spain's first smartphone maker calls it quits

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Geeksphone, the world's first Spanish smartphone maker, has decided to leave the phone business after nearly six years. The company has decided that, after developing six devices, that it has come to the "end of a cycle" and will stop making hardware. Instead, it'll open-source everything that it's able to for the benefit of the community and remain a viable concern to keep the lights on in its technical support division.

There's no prizes for guessing what prompted the company to effectively wind down, which can be summed up as commoditization. After all, if a smartphone ecosystem backed by Microsoft can't succeed in the face of cheap Android handsets, what chance does a tiny European startup have? In the announcement, co-founder Rodrigo Silva-Ramos threw some shade at the industry's big boys, saying that they achieved their position "without much concern for innovation and without being concerned by the needs of [their] users."

Don't feel too sorry for Geeksphone's engineers, since they've all found new jobs working for Silent Circle. That's the privacy-focused firm that the business teamed up with to build the ultra-secure Blackphone -- a partnership that was dissolved just a few months ago. In addition, most of the rest of the company's employees will transition over to geeks!me, a wearable technology company that's developing a new fitness tracking smartwatch.

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