Java mobile multi-platform pah!
Java mobile isn't truly multi-platform to get most applications to work you need to compile different versions of the app for different devices, this has been a bug bear of Java gaming for eons. It truly sucks.
Sun Microsystems has open sourced its Java toolkit for building mobile applications just as the role Java plays on handsets comes into question. The company has released the Light-Weight UI Toolkit (LWUIT) under a GPLv2 license with a classpath exception - for binary linking with an application - as an incubator project to …
One of the problems (Device build fragmentation) will remain regardless of the language/VM implementation. This is because different handsets all have different capabilities wrt. draw speed, 3D capabilities, real VRAM, available static/dynamic RAM, CPU speed, FPU/not, storage space, persistent record space, to name but a few. The handset manufacturers aren't all going to switch their entire phones to contain a homogeneous hardware specification, just to make app porting easier on whatever VM implementation exists.
Well, the fragmentation in the market may be due at least in part to the lack of a complete Open Source toolkit ..... people re tempted to write their own, incompatible ones, and if nobody opens up their Source Code then everybody's one ends up being incompatible with everyone else's.
The existence of a GPL toolkit means that anyone can use it, without paying for it, just as long as they don't try to bogart any changes they may make to it. What's not to like?
I suppose these are the ones that come in .jad files? From time to time I install some interesting-looking Java phonelet thingy and I'm always astonished when it actually works. They mostly crash out with some undiagnosable problem. Wake me when Sun or anyone else provide useful things I can actually do stuff with.
Java may still have a way to go, but its still the only real cross-platform game out there.
I have Java bus timetables from my local bus company on my phone. They work on just about anything.
And I know that Java's not going to crash my phone, unlike some native apps.
Even Nokia´s official radio player app reboots my brand new Nokia phone on a regular basis.