Sun speeds phone Java

Progress

Sun is speeding up mobile Java thanks to a new partnership with Intel to accelerate ARM-based code on the latter's XScale platform. This takes the form of a HotSpot accelerator for the CLDC reference that underpins J2ME, and Juan Dewar told us that it wasn't related to ARM's own Jazelle Java accelerator.

Alas, Sun says that PersonalJava won't be coming back from the dead.

"Personal Java is going to disappear eventually; replaced by CDC and a foundation profile on top of it, which means much higher performance and a smaller memory footprint," Dewar said.

The official roadmap sees richer functionality trickling into the J2ME platform by way of the community process.

"There are no new Java APIs at JavaOne," but he told us to expect new commitments from phone OEMs when they will be shipping MIDP2, which has better security and enhanced graphics.

Until the phone vendors support community requests (JSRs) 120 and 135 there's not much developers can do. Unless 120 is implemented, it isn't possible to send a text message from a Java applet. So some fundamental functionality remains missing.

Sun will today announce a "unified testing criteria" for wireless Java with Nokia, Sony Ericsson, Siemens and Motorola.

Dewar also told us he doesn't see Mobile Flash as a competitive technology, but as a complimentary one. ®

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