Nokia To Acquire Trolltech

Nokia announced today that it plans to acquire Norwegian software company Trolltech, a company known for its development of the Qt application framework, an integral part of the popular open source K Desktop Environment (KDE).

The acquisition of Trolltech will allow Nokia to accelerate its cross-platform software strategy for mobile and desktop devices and further develop its Internet services business. With Trolltech's technology, Nokia and third-party developers hope to develop applications that will work online, on desktop computers and on Nokia's own hardware.

Nokia plans to continue the development of Trolltech's current projects and software assets. KDE users will have little to fear from the change. The KDE Foundation and Trolltech have existing agreements ensuring that KDE cannot fall under a more restrictive license than the Q Public License, even if Trolltech is bought out. Furthermore, KDE is protected by another stipulation that will cause Qt to revert to a fairly permissive BSD-style license if no active development progress is made for a year.

Nokia and Trolltech apparently see eye-to-eye on the matter.

"Trolltech 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," stated Haavard Nord, CEO and founder of Trolltech, in a press release.

Nokia plans to dual-license Qt under a commercial and open source license to stimulate adoption and development.

The acquisition depends on several conditions, including the approval of shareholders and regulatory approvals. The Trolltech board unanimously recommended that its shareholders accept the deal.

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Will Kraft is a Web designer, technical consultant and freelance writer. He can be reached at [email protected]. Also, check out his blog at