Nokia publishes Qt 4.7, hardware accelerated WebKit makes browsing up to 350% faster

In the close to three years that have passed since Nokia purchased Trolltech and then slowly integrated Qt technology into their Symbian and MeeGo platforms we’ve yet to see developers full take advantage of the awesome capabilities that are now baked into millions of devices shipping every quarter, mainly due to the poor implementation of the Ovi Store, but hopefully that will soon change with the new release of Qt, version 4.7, that offers numerous new features and performance improvements.

The key feature of Qt 4.7 is QML (Qt Meta-Object-Language) that makes creating user interfaces and the underlying logic similar to writing JavaScript, enabling both developers and UI designers to share projects together and get their application to market faster. Then there’s QtWebKit, which now has hardware accelerated compositing that makes complicated sites such as Facebook perform 67% faster and other less demanding sites load up to 350% quicker. The QStaticText class has been upgraded to render text twice as fast. The QPainter engine has also been improved to utilize OpenGL more efficiently.

You can read more about what’s new with Qt here, but as a developer you have to ask yourself is it the platform with the easiest development platform that you want to write your applications for, or the one with the most impulse purchase happy consumers? Also be careful of getting weak in the knees by the stories floating around of developers making hundreds of thousands of Euros per month because of something they wrote over the weekend as a hobby and are now quitting their full time job to start a small company. Those cases are rare and are unlikely to happen to you unless you have a really out of this world idea. If you think some social network aggregator or celebrity sound board is going to put food on your table … you’re on drugs.

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