Qt 5.4.0 Alpha is Out!

Jeff Tranter


Jeff Tranter is a Qt Consulting Manager at ICS. Jeff oversees the architectural and high-level design of software systems for clients. Jeff’s leadership organizes global teams of developers on desktop and embedded applications.

By Jeff Tranter | Wednesday, September 10, 2014

Representing a significant milestone towards the next Qt release, the alpha version of Qt 5.4.0 came out this week. Qt 5.4.0 will include a number of interesting new features. In this blog post, I will briefly mention just a few of the highlights.

QtWebEngine, the replacement for QtWebKit that I described in a blog post a few months ago, will be included in the Qt 5.4.0 release and will be supported on the following desktop platforms: Linux, Mac OS X and Windows.

Another new module being added is QtWebChannel. This facility makes any QObject accessible to arbitrary JavaScript clients, facilitating the creation of hybrid Qt/web applications.

The Qt Quick Controls and Qt widgets will now support the native look and feel on the Android platform.

Qt 5.4.0 also introduces a new licensing option. In addition to the Digia commercial license  and the GPL and LGPL version 2.1, existing Qt modules will also be offered under the LGPL version 3 license. Some new modules, like QtWebEngine, will only be offered under the GPL and LGPL version 3 (as well as the commercial license). Software licensing is always a complex issue, and with these new license options, you should be even more diligent about seeking advice to understand the implications for each of the different license options.

Two new modules have been announced but are not yet in the alpha release: QtCanvas3D and a new lightweight QML WebView component. I hope to see these modules show up in the final Qt 5.4.0 release.

The current release plan for Qt 5.4 calls for a beta release at the end of September, then moves toward candidate release status in October with a final release expected in mid- November. I hope to publish more detail in future blogs about the new features and modules as Qt 5.4 moves through its release cycle.

I encourage you to try out the alpha release, look at the new features, and report any issues you might find back to the Qt project.

References

Here are a few links that are relevant to the Qt 5.4.0 release:

  1. Building QtWebEngine, ICS blog post, accessed April 23,2014, www.ics.com/blog/building-qtwebengine
  2. Qt 5.4 Alpha Available, Digia blog post, accessed September 8, 2014, blog.qt.digia.com/blog/2014/09/08/qt-5-4-alpha-available
  3. What is New in Qt 5.4, Qt Project Wiki page, accessed September 8, 2014, qt-project.org/wiki/New-Features-in-Qt-5.4
  4. Known Issues for 5.4.0 Alpha, Qt Project wiki page, accessed September 9, 2014, qt-project.org/wiki/Qt540-KnownIssues
  5. Adding LGPL v3 to Qt, Digia blog post, accessed August 20, 2014, blog.qt.digia.com/blog/2014/08/20/adding-lgpl-v3-to-qt
  6. Qt 5.4 Release Plan, Qt Project wiki page, accessed September 9, 2014, qt-project.org/wiki/Qt-5.4-release


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