Java for Palm OS Devices, Act 2
Way back in July 2003 I blogged about palmOne licensing IBM's J2ME implementation (WME) for its Tungsten devices. Tungstens with built in Java support are now in use, but as I noted back in that blog:
When will all Palm devices, much less all Palm OS based devices, include a built in Java runtime, not just the Tungstens? Time will tell, but my gut says very soon: If they don't, they'll suffer the consequences as J2ME rolls on to the tune of millions of Java developers and hundreds of millions of consumers with Java devices everywhere.
Time has in fact told, as PalmSource, the makers of the Palm OS, announced at their developer conference recently that they will be including WME in Palm OS, too. Burried at the bottom of the press release are the bits we developers want to get at:
It is anticipated that IBM WME will enable the support of the industry standards for the Connected Limited Device Configuration (CLDC) 1.0 and 1.1 and Mobile Information Device Profile (MIDP) 1.0 and 2.0 in compliance with the Sun Technology Compatibility Kits (TCK), which will allow Palm Powered smart mobile devices to seamlessly execute J2ME-compliant MIDlet Suite applications. PalmSource intends to offer Palm OS licensees the WME JVM and runtime licenses on Palm OS Garnet and Palm OS Cobalt later this summer.
What's the net-net? Soon all manufactuers of Palm OS based devices (Garnet and Cobalt based) will have an optimized J2ME runtime to build into their smartphones and PDAs.
At long, long last I'll be able to target Java apps at all upcoming Palm OS devices knowing they'll pass my "Mother Test". Now the question that remains: Will Palm OS/Java powered smartphones by able to regain the ground they've lost to Series 60/Symbian during the last couple of years of J2ME development and deployment? Time will tell, indeed.