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Qt embedded GUI adds Yocto Project recipes, hops up emulator

Mar 3, 2014 — by Eric Brown 7,763 views

Digia updated its bootable, Linux and Android ready Qt Enterprise Embedded GUI with optimized Yocto Project recipes, a faster emulator, and a virtual keyboard.

Digia announced Qt Enterprise Embedded in October as a commercial distribution for enterprises. Like the Qt 5.2 cross-platform framework it’s based on, Qt Enterprise Embedded supports Android, as well as Linux. The platform combines Qt’s drag-and-drop GUI builder with an IDE based on Qt Creator and Ubuntu, as well as a Boot to Qt embedded stack for Android and Linux targets.

Sample embedded heart monitor application built with Qt Enterprise Embedded
(click image to enlarge)

While the original Qt Enterprise Embedded used Yocto Project code as a foundation for the Linux embedded stack, the new version provides embedded Linux developers with Qt-optimized recipes build recipes using Yocto Project tooling. The recipes help developers “take their prototype quickly into production,” says Digia.

In addition, major enhancements have been made to the emulator, which now uses native graphics acceleration on the host computer. As a result, applications “run at least as fast on the emulator as on the real device,” says Digia. The emulator has also added sensor emulation, letting developers test how their application reacts to various sensor inputs.

Qt Enterprise Embedded architecture
(click image to enlarge)

The new version integrates an embedded specific version of Qt’s Virtual Keyboard. The touchscreen-ready keyboard UI offers scalable screen sizes and resolutions, and ships with sample modern and retro styles. The Qt Virtual Keyboard is fully licensed under Qt Enterprise Embedded, and can be freely used in embedded products “without concerns over third party license compatibility,” says the company. It can also be extended with commercial and open source spell checkers and word prediction engines.

Qt Virtual Keyboard
(click image to enlarge)

Other new Qt Enterprise Embedded features include more customizable UI controls, including pre-defined Quick Enterprise Controls. Available controls include circular gauge, straight gauge, delay button, pie menu, dial and toggle button, switch, slider, progress bar, and checkbox selections.


Qt Enterprise Embedded has added the BeagleBone Black (shown at right) and a generic “x86 PC” target to its previous list of verified reference platforms, which include the Beagle Board xM, Raspberry Pi, SabreLite, and Nexus 7. Other hardware is also supported and customized by Digia and its services partners, says the company.

The mainstream, cross-platform Qt 5.2 framework was released in October as a beta, and went final in December, for the first time providing full Android and iOS support. Last month, Qt. advanced to Qt. 5.2.1, notable for its JavaScript and QML specific performance optimizations in the Qt Quick Engine.

Further information

More information on the new Qt Enterprise Embedded may be found at Digia’s Qt Enterprise Embedded product page, as well as our earlier LinuxGizmos coverage.

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