Digia Acquires Nokia's Cross-Platform App Development Framework
Bangalore: Nokia, the world’s leading mobile phone supplier recently sold its Qt Cross-Platform App Development framework to Digia, an IT services firm. There has been no formal announcement from either Nokia or Diagia about the terms of the sale.
Digia will also absorb a maximum of 125 Nokia employees, most based in Oslo, Norway and Berlin, Germany. Through late 2010, Nokia touted the Qt environment as its sole application creation framework moving forward, stating developers who built apps in Qt would be able to deploy their software across devices running both the Symbian and MeeGo operating systems. However, in February 2011, Nokia embraced Microsoft's Windows Phone OS as its primary smartphone platform, effectively negating Qt's importance to the company.
According to Digia, more than 450,000 developers as well as thousands of companies across industries including automotive, medical, industrial automation and aerospace have built apps and UIs leveraging the Qt framework. Digia said its future research and development efforts will expand Qt to the iOS and Android mobile operating systems while also focusing on desktop and embedded platform support. Digia adds it will collaborate with ecosystem members to fine-tune the forthcoming Qt5 and is committed to maintaining Qt's availability under both open source and commercial licenses.
The Qt sale represents the latest in a series of strategic decisions intended to move Nokia out of non-core businesses. Since mid-2011, Nokia has outsourced Symbian software development to Accenture, sold its messaging business to Synchronica, shuttered its Ovi Share media sharing site and axed its Mobile Financial Services unit.
Nokia is also selling more than 500 patents and patent applications to Vringo, the company best known for its Facetones application, which builds slideshows out of images drawn from the user's social media networks and photo websites. The Verge reports the deal is valued at $22 million.
According to Vringo--which in March 2012 merged with Innovate/Protect, the owner of patent assets acquired from search website Lycos--the Nokia patents span a range of cellular infrastructure technologies including communication management, data and signal transmission, mobility management, and radio resources management and services. The patents relate to wireless standards including 2G, 2.5G, 3G and 4G, as well as technologies like GSM, WCDMA, T63, T64, DECT, IETF, LTE, SAE and OMA.
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