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Digia To Acquire Qt From Nokia 152

Posted by timothy
from the well-that's-cute dept.
First time accepted submitter MrvFD writes "Ever since the most recent layoffs were announced by Nokia last month and the end of Qt related programs at Nokia was rumored, the fate of Qt has been in the air despite it nowadays having a working open governance model. Fear no longer, Qt brand, since Digia has now announced acquiring the Qt organization from Nokia. While relatively unknown company to the masses, it has already been selling the non-free (non-LGPL) licenses of Qt for 1.5 years. Hopefully this'll mean a bright future for Qt in co-operation with other Qt wielding companies like Google, RIM, Canonical, Intel, Skype, Microsoft, Jolla and the thousands of Qt open source and commercial license users. Digia now plans to quickly enable Qt on Android, iOS and Windows 8 platforms, where work has already been underway for some time."
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Digia To Acquire Qt From Nokia

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  • Re:Digia ? (Score:5, Informative)

    by Desler (1608317) on Thursday August 09, 2012 @10:33AM (#40931271)

    They've been around for more than 15 years so take that for what you will. There is no guarantees that any company won't go under but they seem solid enough.

  • by Desler (1608317) on Thursday August 09, 2012 @11:07AM (#40931641)

    How is it 'obscure'? It's widely used in large and small commercial companies worldwide. It might be obscure for an average user but they don't really care about such details.

  • Re:Digia ? (Score:4, Informative)

    by TemporalBeing (803363) <{bm_witness} {at} {yahoo.com}> on Thursday August 09, 2012 @01:51PM (#40934373) Homepage Journal

    Their market cap is only about 50 million euro - significantly less than the 104 million euro Nokia paid for Trolltech back in 2008 and you get the rest of Digia for free. I'd wager that Digia paid less than 10 million for this, with Nokia taking a loss of over 90%, maybe even 99%. The thing is, I don't see who'd buy it today. Apple and Android have their own toolkits on mobile, Microsoft and Apple have their own toolkit on desktop so nobody needs it to sell hardware except maybe RIM. Going back to the dual GPL/commercial licensing model is nearly hopeless now that it's gone LGPL, people will fork off the last release and split the community. It's a nice product but I don't see how you'd make money on it.

    Remember, Nokia bought all of TrollTech. Digia already purchased the Commercial Licensing from Nokia almost a year ago; and now they're purchasing most of the rest - that is, all the stuff that is Qt, but not necessarily all the people. For instance, on the Qt Dev/interest list it was noted they were assuming 125 people from Nokia; of a possible estimate of 150 max - some of which may have already left. And of course the Australian office was already closed by Nokia so they're not assuming that either (though they are getting the quite a bit of the equipment from what I can tell).

    So just because they're only paying a fraction of what Nokia paid does not mean that they are actually paying less than Nokia did overall. You'd have to run the numbers and do a good comparison of what is actually getting transferred. If they are taking a loss, it's probably not much.

  • And in all reality their Maemo/MeeGo devices outsell the Windows Phone devices when in the same markets.

    Their Maemo/MeeGo devices don't sell nearly enough to sustain a company Nokia's size. If Nokia was a small company the N9 would have been awesome. Elop BTW agrees, that they might be able to get the N9 down to around $250 by 2014/2015 and then they do have a viable device.

    The N9 and its cousins without any marketing (promotions, discounts, etc.) sold at full price and outsold its Lumia brethren which had millions of dollars in marketing (promotions, discounts, etc.). The Maemo/MeeGo OS also would have run on a lot cheaper devices than they can run the Windows Phone OS on. So I call bull - especially on it coming from Elop. If Nokia pursued Maemo/MeeGo on their phones they could easily have transitioned to it from Symbian. If they had put out the N9 and its brethren in sufficient quantity they could have lowered the price through volume discounts. Instead, under the direction of Elop, they did the least possible - low volume kept the price high, no marketing meant lower sales than they could have had, etc. It was simply a matter of he didn't want the Maemo/MeeGo platform to outshine the Windows platform - which, ironically, it did anyway only proving how strong a platform it is. Jolla will have a good business at Nokia expense as a result.

    The problem was he didn't have enough money to last that long.

    They had plenty of money, and plenty of sales to last that long. Nokia was far larger than the smart phone market and dominated the phone market around the world. The exception was the US where they didn't dominate the smart phone market, and were not quite as strong in the feature phone and dumb phone markets. However, the rest of their business more than offset it. Until Elop, his direction for abandoning Maemo/MeeGo, and his statements about abandoning Symbian for Windows in a very short time frame Nokia was very profitable. And, btw, it's hard to destroy a company like Elop did to Nokia, and as the article I linked to shows the shareholders have a very good likelihood for a successful lawsuit against him for what he's done - in 3 different countries nonetheless.

    Certainly customers hate the Lumia and that hasn't worked out for Nokia yet, and may not work out. But the problem with MeeGo devices when we start talking about sustaining Nokia was the ability to produce something inexpensive enough to transition their Symbian base quickly enough. I've read Tomi's blog. Its an interesting blog. But he tends to think like a guy who works for Nokia not a control investor. The people who held Nokia's bonds didn't share Tomi's opinions about Nokia's prospects. Nokia was at $40 a share in late 2007 and at $15 a share when Elop came in. If there had been a MeeGo phone like the N9 when he showed up with a strategy to cut the cost of manufacture there never would have been an alliance with Microsoft.

    Now don't get me wrong I think Tomi's criticism of the terrible job Elop did in managing the transition are spot on. But I don't have access to the T&C with Microsoft. I don't know that Microsoft, after the fiasco with LG, can afford to let Nokia sink and the strategy may always have been: heads Windows works out and the investors get profits from Windows, tails Windows 7 flounders and Microsoft buys Nokia the time it needs.

    Who knows what the strategy was. As the blog noted, the board had to be involved in the decision for such things to go on without Elop's head rolling (thus they're liable too).

    Share value is not a metric of how successful a company is, but rather a metric on how willing others are to bet on the success of the company. You can be the most successful company in the world and have a zero share price; or the worst in the world and have a very high share price.

    Only time will tell if the investors truly agree with Elop. For now, they seem to be sitting on the sidelines; but they may be waiting for another shoe to fall (or so to speak) before doing anything more.

"The pyramid is opening!" "Which one?" "The one with the ever-widening hole in it!" -- The Firesign Theatre

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