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SUSE Linux has no plans to enter the mobile or tablet markets, but instead will concentrate on other areas which are part of the integrated Linux market, the president and general manager of the company, Nils Brauckmann, told iTWire yesterday.

Brauckmann was in Melbourne to preside over a company conference titled "Open Source in the Modern Enterprise"; a similar event is being held in Sydney today.

At least one Linux distribution, Ubuntu, has expressed the intention to go down the mobile and tablet path, while the older of the two desktop environments, KDE, is expected to debut a tablet running a version of the DE later this year.

Brauckmann (seen above) said SUSE was concentrating on areas like broadcasting systems, video systems, healthcare services and mass storage. For example, GEC already has a body scanner that runs SUSE.

SUSE, which is the oldest Linux distribution, starting life in 1992, has its own cloud product and this is another area on which it places focus, Brauckmann said.

The company was bought by the publicly-listed Novell in 2003 and run from the US without a great deal of success; in 2011, Novell was bought by the Attachmate Corporation and taken private. Since then SUSE has been run as an independent business unit, headquartered once again in its original home town of Nuremberg in Germany.

Brauckmann said despite this relocation, a lot of the influence that dictated the company's culture was from outside Europe.

"Our company reflects the values of open source. There is a lot of respect and collaboration, we have people in 43 countries, and there are low barriers to contributions," he said.

Back in September, at the company's annual conference held in Orlando, Florida, Brauckmann had estimated that the first full fiscal year's turnover as an independent private unit would be in the region of $US225 million. Yesterday, with the end of fiscal year just five weeks away, he upped that to $US230 million.

He said SUSE had a customer renewal rate of between 85 and 88 percent and was the dominant operating system in the automotive and aviation markets.

The company was also the only one in the Linux space to have good relationships with proprietary vendors Microsoft and VMWare, he added.

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Sam Varghese

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A professional journalist with decades of experience, Sam for nine years used DOS and then Windows, which led him to start experimenting with GNU/Linux in 1998. Since then he has written widely about the use of both free and open source software, and the people behind the code. His personal blog is titled Irregular Expression.

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