Nokia has confirmed it will cut developer support for the Symbian and MeeGo operating systems two years earlier than previously planned.
A Nokia spokesperson told V3 that the company will cease all developer support for the legacy operating systems as of 1 January 2014. The move is designed to help Nokia fully focus on developing new smartphones and applications for its Lumia and Asha product lines.
"In 2014, following a review of developer and publisher content programs, Nokia will transition to focus all new developer efforts and investments on the growing momentum behind our Lumia and Asha families of devices," the spokesperson said in a statement.
"As a result, the Nokia Store will no longer accept new Symbian or MeeGo content, or updates to existing content, from 1 January 2014."
The move means that Nokia is backtracking on promises that chief executive Stephen Elop made back in 2011, when he said that Symbian would be supported until at least 2016.
However, all existing content will continue to be available for download and Nokia said that it is still committed to continue providing maintenance support for both Symbian and MeeGo.
The news means that the Nokia 808 Pureview, released last year, was the last ever Symbian-powered smartphone. Symbian had been Nokia's primary smartphone operating system since the turn of century, but it was beginning to look dated after the launch of Apple's iPhone and Nokia eventually shifted to running Microsoft's Windows Phone software.
Security was one of Symbian's biggest shortcomings and despite no longer being used by Nokia, recent reports suggest many mobile malware still targets the platform. Most recently the US Department of Homeland Security (DHS ) reported Symbian OS is still the second most targeted mobile operating system, listing 19 percent of all known malware as being designed for it.
The MeeGo news will be of less consequence to the developer community. The OS was only ever used by Nokia on a select number of handsets, like its N9 smartphone. Despite only appearing on a select few handsets MeeGo had carved out a loyal following in the smartphone market.
The cult appeal of the platform led a number of developers to leave Nokia to form a new company, Jolla, focused on continuing MeeGo development. Earlier this year, Jolla unveiled its first MeeGo powered smartphone.