Qt License types

Qt Framework is available under both commercial and open source licenses providing various benefits. There are two commercial packages available for software development with Qt which differ in targeted platforms: Qt for Application Development and Qt for Device Creation. Each package is available in two variants providing a different sets of additional functionalities: Professional and Enterprise.

Qt for Application Development, like most of popular technologies and programming languages, is also available under the open source GNU Lesser General Public License (LGPLv3). This licensing option can be used for commercial projects where all of the open-source license obligations can be met.

Qt Framework

Qt for Application Development - Open Source LGPLQt for Application Development - Professional & EnterpriseQt for Device Creation - Professional & Enterprise
Qt Essentials - Core, QML, Widgets and morecheck-markcheck-markcheck-mark
Desktop developmentcheck-markcheck-markcheck-mark
Mobile developmentcheck-markcheck-markcheck-mark
Qt Add-Ons✳️ (Selection of addons)check-markcheck-mark
M2M Protocols modules-✳️ (Enterprise variant only)check-mark
Devices development--check-mark
Automotive development--✳️ (Selection of addons)

Qt Framework, with selection of modules and addons, is also available under GPL license. In most cases such a license is used for development of open-source software which uses only GPL licensed libraries and is distributed under the same license.

Packages for software development

Qt for Application Development

  • Dedicated for creating software for desktop and mobile platforms.
  • Comes with full set of Qt APIs and tools like Qt Creator.
  • Both Professional and Enterprise tiers provide access to whole set of Qt Add-Ons such as WebEngine, Charts or Qt Quick 3D.
  • Enterprise tier comes with modules for widely adopted Machine to Machine connectivity protocols such as MQTT.

Qt for Device Creation

  • Dedicated for development of embedded devices.
  • Support for multiple platforms like embedded Linux, FreeRTOS or bare metal.
  • Comes with all functionalities of Qt for Application development including.
  • Both Professional and Enterprise tiers provide set of embedded images and additional tools for embedded development.
  • Enterprise tier comes with additional support for automotive grade hardware and support for safety critical use cases.

Qt open source license obligations

Licenses used for distribution of open source software come with various obligations. One of the commonly used licenses is GNU Lesser General Public License (LGPL). All of the Qt Essentials modules are available under such a license and can be used to develop both commercial software and open-source projects. Take a look at short overview of key LGPL obligations which you need to meet in order to make your project LGPL compliant.

code

Source code of Qt used in the project, or instructions on how to get the source code, need to be distributed with project. If Qt source code was modified changes needs to be published too.

link

Qt is linked dynamically or whole project source code is distributed under LGPL license if the Qt is linked statically.

relink

User needs to be allowed to re-link or modify Qt LGPL linked libraries.

info

Information that Qt LGPL library is used need to be put in the application.

file

Copy of LGPL License is distributed with application.

handshake

Terms of usage for product are not restricting any parts of the LGPL license.

distributed

Application is distributed via channels which policies are LGPL compliant.

Full list of obligations and more information about LGPL available in following sources:

Looking for support?

As Qt Service Partner, Scythe Studio supports clients with selection of right license and purchase process. Get in touch with us right away for expert assistance in choosing the best choice for your project's requirements.

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Benefits of commercial licenses

box

Access to dedicated modules with a variety of ready-made solutions.

paper

No need to worry about open source obligations.

puzzle

All of the modules licenses are compatible with each other.

package

You can distribute software on your own terms.

technical

Extended support for LTS versions.

When selecting your licensing option it is crucial to consider the benefits of commercial licenses. Selection of the right licensing option can lower your time-to-market and make your product more reliable by ensuring long term support and license compatibility.

When is commercial license needed?

Distributing software which does not meet LGPL requirements.

forbidden

Distributing devices with embedded software using Qt.

cpu

Developing commercial apps needing access to Qt implementation of M2M protocols like MQTT or CoAP.

neural

Using commercial-only modules like Boot to Qt.

customer-support

Making the right choice can be hard. Here are a few common cases in which commercial license would be needed for your project. In case where you cannot match your project to any of the cases feel free to reach out using contact form below.

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FAQ

  • Is Qt framework free?

    • All Qt essentials (Qt Core, Qt Quick, Qt QML, Qt Widgets, etc.) are available under free open source licenses (LGPL and GPL). As long as your project complies to the open source licenses obligations you can use Qt under those free licenses.
  • Where I can look for support in coding my Qt QML project?

    • Scythe Studio - our Qt QML consulting company can help you achieve your objectives by providing you with skilled developers. See our Qt QML development service page for more details.
  • How much does the Qt license cost?

    • Qt for Application Development costs from 302$ up to 409$ monthly depending on selected tier and payment plan.
    • Pricing of Qt for Device Creation is provided on a request.
  • Are there any licensing discounts for small businesses?

    • Qt for Small Business license is available for 499$ yearly and allows for mobile, desktop and embedded development. This license is available for businesses which do not exceed revenue and founding of 250 000$ and do not need more than 4 developer licenses.
    • Learn more at https://www.qt.io/pricing/qt-for-small-business
  • Do I need a commercial Qt license to develop any application?

    • Commercial license is not needed if your commercial project uses only Qt modules available under LGPL license and you comply to LGPL obligations while distributing the product.
    • Licesne is not needed if you are planning to distribute an open-source project and comply with GPL or LGPL license obligations for the Qt modules that you are using.
  • When do you need the Qt license?

    • Commercial license is needed if you don't want to comply to open source licenses obligations, plan on distributing devices using Qt for embedded platforms, want to use Qt commercial-only modules or looking for dedicated support from Qt company.
    • Examples of common cases where Qt license is needed include creating medical devices, consumer electronics, automotive HMI, etc.
  • How to make sure that you meet LGPL requirements?

  • What is the difference between Qt for Application Development and Qt for Device Creation?

    • Qt for Application Development is dedicated for software targeting desktop and mobile platforms. Qt for Device Creation is targeting development of embedded devices.