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Nokia relicenses Qt

Nokia relicenses Qt

Posted Jan 23, 2009 2:50 UTC (Fri) by dkite (guest, #4577)
In reply to: Nokia relicenses Qt by giraffedata
Parent article: Nokia relicenses Qt

Back up a little. Nokia bought Qt for the benefits of a cross platform
library. They can have one code base for their applications that run on
numerous platforms.

The 4.5 version will include a port for symbian, which Nokia owns.
Under the previous arrangement, there would be some shops that would port
their application to that platform, commercial applications, maybe
vertical market. Maybe some gpl stuff would be ported, a qt or kde app that
a developer wanted to use on his S60 phone. More than
likely Nokia themselves would be the biggest user doing most of the testing
and finding the
corner case bugs.

If the lgpl license attracts new developers who target the phone market,
they will probably test the S60 port along with the CE and linux based
ports. And find bugs, suggest or submit improvements. Phonon started as a
KDE solution to the thorny question of what sound library to use. It is now
part of Qt. Nokia benefits from the improved library, all the while the
developers benefit from a great library that will open up platforms that
they would never have considered before. And applications sell hardware.

It's an interesting strategy. Microsoft is a step ahead in the platform
building game, Apple has their peculiar way of building a market that is
probably impossible for anyone to copy. Google is trying to build a
platform with Android. Same with Palm. The last two are late in the game,
but have some advantages to offer. It looks like Nokia is trying to
leverage the existing Qt developer base to build a platform. The call it Qt
everywhere.

I understood the Trolltech/KDE relationship. I've had two
platforms disappear underneath me, losing the learning and development
effort. I don't want to repeat that too many times. When Nokia bought
Trolltech I could see why they bought it. Excellent technology that
probably even if used internally would make sense to them. But that
wouldn't make sense for KDE. And if it didn't make sense, it wouldn't last.

But I see how Nokia benefits from KDE. If KDE does well, keeps vigorous,
new developers learn the api and Qt, come up with neat ideas, Nokia's
platform benefits. As does KDE.

Interesting. We shall see how it plays out.

Derek


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