What's up with wireless Java?

by Steve Anglin

Related link: http://news.com.com/2100-1001-978294.html?tag=lh

Wireless Java is here, but not hot to trot. The acceptance and application of wireless Java by developers is not as wide as anticipated for a number of reasons. This will, perhaps, continue for at least another year because of the following reasons:

As reported in this CNET News.com article, the release of MIDP 2.0 brings "the promise of simpler cell phone programming, richer games, more money for cell phone service providers and software that connects to Internet services. But some experts predict that memory requirements and cost will likely hamper adoption of the software, known as Mobile Information Device Platform (MIDP) 2.0."

I think the other reasons include lack of Java development tools for wireless application development and a dwindling U.S. demand in sophisticated cell phones and cell phone applications during this economic downturn.

There's no question that wireless Java is a powerful programming medium for cell phones and other wireless devices. It's a question of "when", not "if".

Do you agree with my take that wireless Java is really a question of "when", not "if"?


2002-12-30 07:41:24
Stuck in the sandbox
There are other reasons why Wireless Java / J2ME is not quite there yet. First, the limited feature set is a big problem. Sure, you can't run a JVM in a mobile phone memory footprint, but on the other hand working in the device's native OS is a lot more compelling. A bigger problem is the sandbox. Basically anything written in Java lives in its own world. It may well be able to reach out over a network connection to Web Services, J2EE servers, whatever, but it can't integrate with basic local services such as the address book, the telephony stack (ok, that would be pushing it a bit), media files, etc etc. So basically a J2ME Midlet isn't integrated with the mobile device, and that doesn't make much sense given the nature of the thing.
2002-12-30 07:42:38
sorry, forgot to sign:

David Mantripp, david.mantripp@bluewin.ch