Rant on Moblin, Meego and now Tizen

Sep 28, 2011


I spend a great deal of time reading about new technologies. Usually, that leaves me excited with all the new cool upcoming stuff and occasionally I feel like developing on it. For a while, I have been a big fan of the Qt development framework. The API is clean, the IDE is nice and it also allows you to create rich applications in QML without much programming experience. In the video above, the Nokia N9 is demonstrated. This UI, that seems to impress most people - would not be possible without Qt. Now, unfortunately Nokia’s new CEO (fresh from Microsoft) decided that Meego was a burning platform and abandoned it. That left Meego in the hands of Intel, who said that “they were fully committed”. Which, today, we found out was a lie. Tizen (or Tarzan as I will remember it) is a joint effort between two hardware companies, Intel and Samsung and Meego will transition into it. The good:

  • Intel and Samsung are working together on a Linux platform

The bad:

  • Developers do not like to be kicked in the groin. That is, learning a platform, only to discover that it is no longer preferred.
  • Intel and Samsung are not software companies, their focus will always be hardware.
  • So much effort has been put into transitioning the old Moblin onto Qt/Meego - I somehow doubt that those people are willing to rewrite everything in HTML5.
  • There are already projects that are focused on bringing HTML5 based UI to the mobile.


Stop shaking the foundations! It is hurting everyone involved. It seems that these hardware companies think that open-source developers somehow grow on trees and are not sensitive to constant changes. “We will just grow new developers!“. I fear that this recent action will further diminish developer interest for the mobile space and encourage people to go with a more stable platform, such as Apple’s Objective-C or Android’s Java based platform.