In just two weeks, Mobile World Congress 2011 will be kicking off in Barcelona. Nokia will be there and has just announced details of its talks, exhibitions and press briefings. On each day of MWC someone from Nokia will be speaking, including new CEO Stephen Elop and Mary McDowell. Nokia will have three exhibition stands, for NavTeq, Qt and Nokia Siemens Networks. Nokia will also be hosting a developer day at the AppPlanet event. Finally, Nokia will be showing off its deveice portfolio and Ovi services at the Pepcom Mobile Focus event.
Even though we first reported on the standardisation of mobile phone chargers two years ago, the International Electrotechnical Commission has finally published its IEC International Standard IEC 62684, entitled "Interoperability specifications of common external power supply (EPS) for use with data-enabled mobile telephones". This final push has partly been made possible by the IEC signing a "memorandum of understanding" with the USB Implementers Forum. The standard has been based on specifications from fourteen companies: Apple, Nokia, Research in Motion, Emblaze Mobile, Huawei Technologies, LGE, Motorola Mobility, NEC, Qualcomm, Samsung, Sony Ericsson, TCT Mobile (ALCATEL), Texas Instruments and Atmel.
After the publication of Nokia's 2010 Q4 results, there has been much fevered discussion across the Internet about why Nokia, with (ex-)Microsoft's Stephen Elop at the helm, may turn to other operating systems for its phones. The alternative operating systems in the spotlight being Android (Q4's biggest seller) and Windows Phone 7. Here at All About Symbian, we have been considering these options and finding that they just do not stand up to a reasoned analysis. An article entitled "Should Nokia Be Looking At Android or WP7? Not Yet", over at Gigaom, broadly agrees with our appraisal of the options.
Nokia has released its Q4 2010 results, reporting an operating profit of €884 million (down 23% Year-on-Year), with net sales of €12.65 billion (up 6% YoY). Nokia's device and service division's profits were €1090 million, up 10% from Q3. Margins in devices and services were 11.3% (down 4.1% YoY and up 0.9% QoQ).
Nokia sold more than 5 million Symbian^3 devices. Total converged devices sales (mainly Symbian-powered smartphones) were up, at 28.3 million, compared with 20.8 million units in Q3 2009 (up 36% YoY) and compared with 26.5 million units in Q3 2010 (up 7%, QoQ). Worldwide smartphone market share was 31%, down 6% sequentially and 9% year on year, due to the overall smartphone market growth, estimated up by a huge 63% YoY. [Post updated with extra charts and quotes]
Canonical's Mark Shuttleworth has announced that Qt libraries will ship in the Ubuntu 11.10 CD. Ubuntu has always been a GTK based Linux distribution (not withstanding its Kubutnu sister distribution). The obstacle for Qt developers to write for a GTK based operating system was because of the system settings framework, in the case of GTK this is the dconf system. Canonical are now funding work to crate Qt bindings for dconf. This will allow Qt applications to run in the GNOME desktop on Ubuntu without breaking the cohesive look and feel of the application set. Read on for more.
Questions have been raised in the MeeGo community recently over the support for Microsoft's NTFS. Clearly, support for this in end-user MeeGo netbooks would be expected as this is often the file system that external hard drives are shipped with. Therefore, in the interests of interoperability, consumers should expect MeeGo to work with such devices. The lack of support was recently raised as a bug in the MeeGo community, to which the response that productised installs may have a licensed NTFS driver added on top of the open source core, but that NTFS support would not be added to MeeGo Core OS. Read on for more.
Nokia today announced the release of the Qt 1.1 SDK Technology Preview. The new SDK, based on Qt 4.7, is a merge of the Nokia Qt SDK 1.0 and the previous Qt SDK. The release gives developers an early opportunity to familiarise themselves with the next version of the SDK. A key theme of the release is to allow developers to easily get started with Qt Quick development on Symbian, Maemo 5 and the desktop. The new SDK also makes it easier for Symbian developers to use native APIs in their code.
Here is a heads-up to anyone who uses the formerly WRT based Twitter client, TwimGo, on their N900. The author Tommi Laukkanen (@tlaukkanen), as moved development of his comprehensive Twitter application to the Qt QML framework. This means that we can hope to see it released for MeeGo and even perhaps Symbian^3. This is yet another great example of what can be achieved with the Qt framework. As seen in the video below (click through from front page), the 3D-like transitions are smooth and fast on the N900, with no discernible penalty for the overhead of Qt.
I'd like to draw your attention to blog post by a MeeGo community manager Jarkko Moilanen (aka kyb3R). This is a great story of how someone with an interest in the Hacker culture, and a background in attending Ubuntu LUGs went on to be responsible for building the "MeeGo Network Fi", the Finnish community for MeeGo development. In the post he explains how events unfolded for him to be in his current position, and the things that worked well, and not so well. I would rate this as a must read for anyone aspiring to form their own regional MeeGo group.
[December] The Meego technical steering group have announced a new policy for dealing with the increasing backlog of vendor-contributed kernel patches relevant to MeeGo waiting to be added upstream. Each of these vendors accumulated hundreds of patches which made managing the MeeGo kernel impractical. To remedy this, the new policy requires specific compliance from vendors, and will entail maintaining a "reference kernel", which closely matches the upstream Linux kernel. Read on for more analysis.