Published by Rafe Blandford at 10:07 GMT, January 28th 2008
Nokia today announced that it would acquire Trolltech a company
which provides software development platforms and frameworks. Trolltech
is best known for its Qt product, a multi-platform graphical
user-interface framework. Qt is used in KDE, the web browser Opera,
Skype and Google Earth applications. Nokia intends to use Qt to enable
cross platform development environments.
Another Trolltech product is Qtopia, an application
platform for Linux devices, a subset of this product Qtopia Phone
Edition is aimed at mobile phone usage.
will offer NOK 16 per share in cash for TrollTech suggestion an overall
valuation of approximately £84 million. The acquisition is subject to
the usual regulatory and share holder approval. Nokia expects to
complete the acquisition in Q2 2008.
indicates that the acquisition of Trolltech will enable it to
accelerate its own cross-platform software strategy for mobile devices
and desktop applications. Developers will be able to create
applications that work in the Internet, across Nokia's device portfolio
and on PCs. Nokia will enable this by providing cross platform
development environments. This is an existing part of Nokia's developer
strategy (Web runtime, Flash, Java and Open C are current examples of
cross platform environments). However Qt has, potentially, a greater
ability to link PC and mobile development that other technologies that
Here is a slide from the Nokia press announcement that shows Nokia cross platform strategy in relation to Trolltech.
the acquisition can be seen as the purchase of an essential building
block in enabling its software and Internet services strategy. A key
part of the thinking behind Ovi was that it would be cross platform
(recall that Ovi has a mobile, Web and PC component) and would embrace
technology landscape evolves and, for Nokia, software plays a major
role in our growth strategy for devices, PCs and the integration with
the Internet. We continue to focus on areas where we can differentiate
and add more value. Common cross-platform layers on top of our software
platforms attract innovation and enable Web 2.0 technologies in the
mobile space," said Kai Öistämö, Executive Vice President, Devices,
Nokia. "Trolltech's deep understanding of open source software and its
strong technology assets will enable both Nokia and others to innovate
on our device platforms while reducing time-to-market. This acquisition
will also further increase the competitiveness of S60 and Series 40."
acquisition further burnishes Nokia's open source credentials and
affirms its strategy of an open approach to technology. It gives Nokia
a considerable talent pool and culture of open source use and creation
and makes it a significant part of the open source community.
and Nokia share the goal of accelerating the adoption of Trolltech's Qt
based technology in the commercial market and in the open source
community," said Haavard Nord, CEO and founder of Trolltech. Eirik
Chambe-Eng, Chief Troll and co-founder of Trolltech continues "We are
thrilled to join forces with Nokia. The company's innovative culture
and resources will give our employees new and exciting possibilities
and fulfill our vision of "Qt everywhere"."
will continue to develop Trolltech product portfolio and continue to
license Trolltech's technology under both open source and commercial
Trolltech is best known in the mobile space for its Qtopia software platform. Notable has been the release of its Greenphone
and related products and SDKs. Due, at least partially, to its activities in this space Trolltech is a member of LiMo Foundation
an alliance aimed at creating a Linux based software platform for
mobiles phones. This can be seen as a direct competitor to Nokia's S60
platform. However it is likely that Nokia considers the Qt related
assets as the driving force behind the acquisition, although the assets
related to Qtopia should be carefully noted too.