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Nokia applies branding iron to Qt's other cheek

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Qt Software, maker of the popular cross-platform API and widget set, has undergone its second Nokia re-branding in less than two years.

The operation will now be called Qt Development Frameworks, with the software given a new online destination - qt.nokia.com.

Daniel Kihlberg, director of global sales, marketing, and services for Nokia Qt Development Frameworks said in a statement that Nokia wants to increase the number of mobile developers using the software.

"To achieve this we've strengthened our brand's link to the Nokia brand," Kihlberg said. "We selected Qt Development Frameworks because at the end of the day, our goal is to provide developers with the best framework: Qt."

Nokia bought Qt maker Trolltech in January 2008 and re-branded the operation Qt Software.

At the time, Nokia said the Trolltech acquisition would accelerate its cross-platform software strategy for mobile devices and desktop applications and develop its internet services business.

This latest move is clearly intended to make developers link Qt with Nokia handsets and target Nokia devices accordingly with applications and services.

It came as Financial Times Deutschland reported Nokia would be dropping Symbian, which it took ownership of last year and then promptly turned over to the Symbian Foundation for development. The FT said Nokia would focus on Maemo, instead.

Kihlberg touted the Maemo with Nokia's S60 as examples of how Nokia will reach out to desktop and web developers in future.

But it's unlikely that such a re-branding will make much difference programmers who will either already be familiar with Qt or its technical capabilities. To these people, making Qt synonymous with brand Nokia will be an almost completely irrelevant exercise. ®

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