The QML component should help give a more consistent look for QML based applications. Previously developers had to create their own UI elements for use in Qt and QML applications. Having a set of ready-to-go UI components will therefore speed up development timescales and reduce overall costs.
The release of the component set means that the Qt development environment for Symbian is now fully mature. The combination of Qt, Qt Quick, Qt Mobility APIs and Qt Quick components for Symbian mean that it now has the same elements as the Symbian C++ (AVKON) development environment. As such Qt is now ready to take its place as the primary development environment for Symbian, something Nokia first talked about last year and reinforced with the release of the Qt 1.1 SDK earlier this year.
Examples UI elements from Qt Quick components 1.0 for Symbian
Qt component are also available for Nokia's Harmattan platform (used by the N9) and will no doubt play a vital role in Nokia's strategy of using Qt to 'bring application to next billion users'. An important part of the appeal of Qt is its cross platform portability and this is reflected in Qt Quick components.
Part of the promise of Qt Quick components is that they will provide native look and feel. In the case of the Symbian release this is targeted at Symbian Belle, the next major update to the platform. Although Nokia have not yet formally announced Symbian Belle, it is set to bring a number of significant UI changes, with the key changes set to include a deprecation of the Options menu driven interface (replaced by a bottom toolbar), a thinner status bar and a pull down notifications area. The example applications, created using Qt Quick components for Symbian and shown in the screenshots below, offer an example of the first two of these changes.
Applications built using Qt Quick components 1.0 for Symbian are already being accepted by the Ovi Store submission process. The Smart Installer will ensure that the components are downloaded and installed on to a users device if necessary. Below are some screenshots, from the example applications, which show how the components can be used to build an attractive looking application.
Qt Quick components 1.0 for Symbian is available as an update for the Qt SDK and can be obtained via the SDK's Maintenance tool in Qt Creator (Help -> Start Updater). Examples are available in the SDK (or here) and full documentation is available here. The components for Symbian and Harmattan are being developed in the open in this public repository.
The initial version only supports Nokia's Symbian^3 devices (N8-00, C7-00, C6-01, E7-00, X7-00, E6-00), but the intention is to widen this to Symbian^1 (S60 5th Edition) devices at a later date.
More information is available on the Qt Labs blog.