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Nokia's Great Software Cleansing scrubs off everything since the '90s

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Nokia took an axe to much of its non-Windows software capacity today, leaving all but a core team working on S40, company insiders say. Among the 10,000 casualties officially announced are teams working on Meltemi, Qt and QML. The team imported via the Smarterphone acquisition will work on S40, we understand.

Engineers were locked out of their source code management systems and wikis before the announcements were made this morning.

Meltemi was the internal platform successor to S40 for lower-capability feature phones, and survived CEO Stephen Elop's first swing of the axe. We exclusively confirmed its existence last October. But the acquisition of Smarterphone in January threw Meltemi's future into doubt. Now, both are history, Meltemi without ever being officially announced to developers. And with only one platform, Nokia no longer needs a cross-platform development environment. So is it farewell for Qt and QML? Not at all, says Nokia. "Speculation is groundless," a company spokesman told us.

The dramatic streamlining leaves Nokia exactly the same internal software platform as it had in the late 1990s, before the great smartphone adventure began, in the shape of its home-grown NOS (Nokia OS). Nokia’s 3,000 Symbian engineers were spun out to Accenture last year, Meego has been sidelined, and now the Smarterphone and indigenous Linux project Meltemi have hit the dust too.

Nokia really has no ‘Plan B’ now.

It also means a potential Nokia buyer no longer has to cherrypick very hard. They just have to get out the chequebook. ®

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