Qt Moving To Commercial-Only LTS
Written by Kay Ewbank   
Monday, 11 January 2021

As rumored last year, the Qt Company has announced that now that Qt 6 is released, Qt 5.15 LTS will move to a 'commercial-only' phase.

Qt is a cross-platform application and UI software development framework that lets you create native apps for desktop, embedded or mobile platforms. Qt started life as a widget library written in C+ with bindings to other languages including Python, Rust, Go, Java and JavaScript. Qt's advantages are its wide set of user interface and data visualization modules.


The announcement of the move to a commercial-only phase said that all the existing 5.15 branches will remain publicly visible, but they are now closed for new commits (and cherry-picks). There are a couple of exceptions, specifically the Qt WebEngine (and the deprecated Qt Script), which have a 3rd party LGPL dependency.

The move was made on 5th January 2021, and from now on the cherry-picks go to another repository that will be available only for the commercial license holders. Commercial license holders will be given access, so that in addition to the official releases they will be able to use these repositories. The first commercial-only Qt 5.15.3 LTS patch release is planned to be released in February.

When the rumors about the move to a commercial-only model surfaced last year, the reason was apparently because of the effect Covid-19 is having on the company finances, meaning they need to increase short-term revenues.

At the time Olaf Schmidt-Wischhöfer of KDE said:

"They announced that LTS releases of Qt will only be available for paid license holders. It is still unclear what this implies for contributions to Qt and for the sharing of security fixes between the various parties (including The Qt Company, the many Qt experts contributing, the KDE community, and Linux distributions)."

It will be interesting to see whether third party developers will make good their plans to fork Qt now it has gone to a paid model. When the forking plan was discussed, backers included developers of the Qute browser developer and the QGIS project.

The news of the commercial move so soon after the release of Qt 6, when the new version is still bedding in, is seen as provocative, especially for developers who have contributed to fixes for problems with Qt 5.15, and now don't have a public release with the fixes they've worked on. Thiago Macieira of Intel, a long term Qt contributor, has said that he will no longer be participating in fixes or commenting and reviewing on bug reports.


More Information

Qt Download Page

Related Articles

Qt 6 Released

Qt for Python Released

Qt May Move To Paid Model  

Qt 5.6 Released

Qt 5.5 Released

Qt 5.4 Released

Qt’s New Home

Qt 5.3 Released

Qt 5.2 Released

Digia Buys Qt Development Platform



To be informed about new articles on I Programmer, sign up for our weekly newsletter, subscribe to the RSS feed and follow us on Twitter, Facebook or Linkedin.


50 Years Of Rubik's Cube

The iconic 3D mechanical puzzle, Rubik's Cube, was invented in 1974 and celebrates its 50th anniversary this year. As well as being a popular puzzle that anyone can try to solve, it touches on some in [ ... ]

Docker Reveals The Application Development Landscape

The 2024 Docker State of Application Development Report is intended to provide a "deep-focus snapshot of the rapidly evolving world of software development today". 

More News

kotlin book



or email your comment to: comments@i-programmer.info

Last Updated ( Monday, 11 January 2021 )