Nokia Research Center and the Massachusetts Institute of Technology Computer Science and Artificial Intelligence Laboratory (CSAIL) have announced a research collaboration to advance the state of the art in mobile computing and communications technologies. As a result a new research facility – the Nokia Research Center Cambridge – will be established near the MIT campus, where researchers from both establishments will work closely together on a new vision for mobile computing. The center will begin operations on 1 January 2006 and five initial research projects have already been planned.

Approximately 20 researchers each from MIT and Nokia will participate in joint projects under the direction of a joint steering committee.

The work of the center will take a view of the future where small handheld devices such as mobile phones will become parts of an "ecosystem" of information, services, peripherals, sensors and other devices. Research will address new user interfaces that incorporate speech and other modalities, new mobile computing platforms, including low power hardware platforms and wireless communication, as well as new software architectures. Researchers will also address new ways of managing information.

"For Nokia, this is a fresh approach to our research collaboration with universities," said Dr. Bob Iannucci, head of Nokia Research Center. "Bringing together the collective expertise of MIT and Nokia in mobile computing and communications provides a vehicle for rapidly generating new concepts and bringing innovations to the marketplace on a large scale."

"This is a totally unique kind of collaboration for both MIT and Nokia," said Professor Rodney Brooks, director of CSAIL. "Unlike most university-industry alliances, where researchers work at their own pace, often at opposite ends of the globe, the joint laboratory with Nokia will bring a dynamic group of scientists into close physical proximity in an open, creative and dynamic environment."