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Qt announces Linux design win in IP phones

Oct 14, 2008 — by Eric Brown — from the LinuxDevices Archive — 68 views

Nokia's Qt Software (formerly Trolltech) announced a design win with LG-Nortel using its Qt Extended development software to create Linux-based phone interfaces. Qt also announced a distribution agreement with IT consultancy TietoEnator on using the Qt application framework, and announced a “Pimp My… Widgets” contest.

(Click for larger view of screens from two Qt Extended 4.4 reference designs: a Video IP Deskphone (left) and a mobile phone)

The announcements were made in conjunction with this week's Qt Developer Days in Munich, Germany. A similar event is scheduled for Oct 29-30 in Redwood City, Calif.

The LG-Nortel win applies to both desktop phones and WiFi handsets, says Qt Software, which recently changed its name from Trolltech, several months after its acquisition by Nokia. The first LG-Nortel phones based on Qt Extended will be an enterprise VoIP phone and a consumer videophone, both due by the end of 2009.

Qt Extended 4.4 architecture

The new Qt Extended 4.4, which was announced at the same time as the name change, was formerly called Qtopia. By any name or measure, the stack has been successful in VoIP phones, according to Qt Software. The company claimed some 40 design wins for the stack back in Mar., 2007.

Building upon the core windowing system of Qt for Embedded Linux, formerly called “Qtopia Core” (formerly Qt/Embedded), Qt Extended offers a user interface (UI) and application stack, and integrates the open source WebKit browser engine. Version 4.4 offers a more modular architecture, improved support for touch interfaces, unified messaging support, “Telepathy” instant messaging (IM), and an automated UI test system, says the company.

Video IP Deskphone design

Although not specifically stated, the new LG-Nortel phones appear to make use of a new Video IP Deskphone reference design (pictured at right) that was announced with Qt Extended 4.4. The design was pre-announced in January as a “kitchen communicator” design that would support unified communications. Based on technology derived from a company called Fonav that Trolltech acquired last year, the Video IP Deskphone incorporates a Broadcom reference board that uses the Broadcom 1103 MIPS CPU with 1180 Multimedia DSP (digital signal processor). The reference board also comes with a board support package (BSP) incorporating Broadcom PhoneXchange 5.0, GCC 4, and Linux kernel 2.6.

A distribution deal and a widget contest

Qt Software's agreement with Helsinki, Finland-based IT consulting firm TietoEnator enables the consultancy to use the Qt application framework in TietoEnator's Telecom & Media development centers. TietoEnator will “adopt and distribute” Qt, according to Qt Software, and will establish competence centers for Qt in the Nordics, EMEA, and Asia-Pacific that will offer professional services based on the technology.

The Qt (pronounced “cute”) cross-platform development framework underlying Qt Extended and Qt for Embedded Linux is intended to let developers compile binaries for various platforms — Linux, Windows, Mac, Java, and now Windows CE — from a single C++ code base. Comprised of some 400 C++ class libraries, its API is said to be consistent across all supported platforms.

Finally, Qt Software announced a “Pimp My Widgets” developer contest to acknowledge the most “innovative, attractive and functional and blingin' widgets using Qt across all supported platforms,” says the company. Qt developers can customize or “pimp” widgets and simple applications from several categories, says Qt Software. The submission deadline is December 31st, and prizes include a Segway i2 Personal Transporter, or one of three Nokia N810 Internet Tablets.


Qt Extended 4.4 is available now, says Qt Software. More information may be found here. More information on the “Pimp my Widgets” contest may be found here.

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