Future versions of RoboVM will no longer be open source

Andy Boxall

In App Development

November 4, 2015

robovm logo

It has been announced that the current version of RoboVM, which is used to develop Java apps for iOS, will stop being open source. RoboVM was last updated in September, reaching version 1.8, and still includes the GPL Version 1.9 license. Subsequent versions will not.

Mario Zechner, a spokesman for the company, said in a blog post:

“RoboVM is a complicated piece of technology that we have worked hard for years to create. Over the past few months, we have seen competitors actively exploiting our good faith by using our open source code to compete with us directly in commercial products. On the flip side, we have received almost no meaningful contributions to our open source code. You can imagine how disappointing this has been to us; we had hoped our initial business model of OSS with proprietary extensions (like our debugger and interface builder integration) would work.”

The current version will be the last open source build of RoboVM


The change will mean an alteration to the pricing structure. Existing customers keep their licenses provided they don’t change tiers. You can see the new program pricing here, and the company says that it will offer a free, lifetime license to “sponsors of RoboVM in the very early days,” and suggests those who may be eligible get in touch via email.