Nokia has confirmed that it is selling off its Qt commercial software licensing and professional services business to Finnish developers Digia.
The deal will see 3,500 customers of the commercial QT team transferred to Digia, which will set up offices in the US and Norway as part of the deal.
Nokia will continue to use Qt on smartphone development for its Symbian and MeeGo devices.
"While Nokia will continue to invest in developing Qt as a cross-platform framework for mobile, desktop and embedded segments, focusing on open source development and expansion, we wanted a partner who can drive the commercial licensing and services business around Qt," said Sebastian Nyström, head of MeeGo, Qt and Webkit at Nokia.
"Digia has proven, in-depth Qt expertise, operational excellence and a keen interest in growing and improving the overall Qt community, so is well positioned to expand the Qt Commercial licensing and services business."
The move is seen by analysts as part of Nokia's deal with Microsoft to make Windows Phone 7 central to the Finnish firm's future.
Windows Phone 7 already has an established developer tools division and, although Nokia will still support Symbian and MeeGo, the deal makes it clear where the company will be focused in the future.
"I suppose now they don't really need to be in the tools business. That's the obvious interpretation," Ovum principal analyst Tony Cripps told V3.co.uk.
"Qt doesn't match with where they stand on Microsoft and, once they made the deal with Redmond, it doesn't seem so relevant."
Nokia acquired the Qt technology as part of its acquisition of Trolltech and, while the software was useful, it suffered from a poor reputation among some developers for being difficult to use.
"We will offer world-class commercial licensing and support services to Qt Commercial customers," said Harri Paani, senior vice president of Digia.
"We also look forward to driving further the evolution of Qt by bringing in new features and services."
The sale will be completed by March, Nokia said. Terms were not disclosed.
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