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08 November 2010, 16:33

Nokia taking over Symbian development

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Symbian Logo The Symbian Foundation has announced that, following a strategy review, it will become a legal entity responsible for licensing software and other intellectual property, including the Symbian trademark. The Foundation says that the first phase of its transition will involve operations and staff reductions. By April of 2011, it expects to be governed by a group of non-executive directors tasked with overseeing the organisation’s licensing function.

Discussing the announcement, Symbian Foundation executive director Tim Holbrow said, "The founding board members took a bold strategic step in setting up the foundation, which was absolutely the right decision at the time," adding that, "There has since been a seismic change in the mobile market, but also more generally in the economy, which has led to a change in focus for some of our funding board members. The result of this is that the current governance structure for the Symbian platform – the foundation – is no longer appropriate".

Nokia Logo Moving forward, mobile phone manufacturer Nokia will take over the Symbian platform code base. The company plans to continue to invest its own resources into developing Symbian, focusing on Qt as its sole application development framework. It hopes that the move will "bring greater efficiency and speed of evolution to the Symbian platform" while ensuring compatibility for apps with future versions.

Nokia Smartphone Senior VP Jo Harlow says that "The future of Symbian as a platform does not depend on the existence of the foundation," noting that, "The changes announced by the foundation have no impact on Nokia's Symbian device road maps or shipping commitments".

Further information about Nokia's plans for the open source Qt user interface framework can be found in a feature article in The H Open titled "The Qt Future - Mobile on Nokia".

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