Feeds

Web happy iPhone dev kit grants free evals

Jobsian vision

Reducing security risks from open source software

WorkLight is offering coders free access to an evaluation version of its multi-platform development suite, billed as a means of building, deploying, and managing applications for iPhones, Androids, BlackBerries, Windows and Mac desktops and notebooks, and the web.

Access to the evaluation suite for development purposes is completely free, and developers are granted unlimited access to the company's tools, including the WorkLight Studio, an Eclipse plug-in that lets you couple web-based code with native code across multiple platforms; the WorkLight Server, which offers caching, clustering, and load balancing; and the WorkLight Console, a web interface for tracking and managing applications.

"No features are turned off," Worklight COO Kurt Daniel tells The Reg.

But once you actually deploy an application, you pay an annual subscription fee or perpetual license based on the number of application end users. Prices start at $4 per user per year, and volume discounts are available.

WorkLight pitches its platform as a way for web-happy developers to deploy applications across various devices using technologies they're familiar with, including HTML, CSS, and JavaScript. "We allow people to create one software application using common web skills and them run it across various environments, like the iPhone, Android, BlackBerry, and even desktop environments," Daniel tells us.

But unlike a tool such as Appcelerator's Titanium, Worklight does not recompile these web languages into native code. In essence, it dovetails web code with pre-built "adapters" that tap native APIs across various environments. The suite also lets you code directly in Objective C for the iPhone.

"WorkLight client-side components access the iPhone APIs only in the manner documented by Apple, and do not use or call any private APIs. Developers are free to call the documented iPhone OS APIs directly using Objective-C code. WorkLight does not create an intermediary translation or compatibility layer that prevents that, therefore it is fully in line with Steve Job’s vision and does not hinder any future platform developments and enhancements," the company says.

The platform also offers Objective C libraries that expose iPhone services to JavaScript and HTML code; JavaScript libraries; and Objective C and JavaScript templates meant as starting points for applications development. On the iPhone, JavaScript code is executed by solely by the iPhone's WebKit-based browser rendering engine.

The WorkLight platform is based on Phone Gap, another multi-platform development tool. This spring, when Steve Jobs changed the iPhone SDK terms of service to bar translations from languages he doesn't approve of, there was speculation that this would ban the use of suites such as Phone Gap or Appcelerator's Titanium. But it now appears that Jobs was merely exercising his personal animosity for Adobe Flash.

WorkLight's free evaluation suite is available through its new WorkLight Dev Zone, which also offers a community forum, training resources, sample applications, and documentation. ®

The Power of One eBook: Top reasons to choose HP BladeSystem

More from The Register

next story
NO MORE ALL CAPS and other pleasures of Visual Studio 14
Unpicking a packed preview that breaks down ASP.NET
Cheer up, Nokia fans. It can start making mobes again in 18 months
The real winner of the Nokia sale is *drumroll* ... Nokia
Mozilla fixes CRITICAL security holes in Firefox, urges v31 upgrade
Misc memory hazards 'could be exploited' - and guess what, one's a Javascript vuln
Put down that Oracle database patch: It could cost $23,000 per CPU
On-by-default INMEMORY tech a boon for developers ... as long as they can afford it
Google shows off new Chrome OS look
Athena springs full-grown from Chromium project's head
Apple: We'll unleash OS X Yosemite beta on the MASSES on 24 July
Starting today, regular fanbois will be guinea pigs, it tells Reg
HIDDEN packet sniffer spy tech in MILLIONS of iPhones, iPads – expert
Don't panic though – Apple's backdoor is not wide open to all, guru tells us
prev story

Whitepapers

Top three mobile application threats
Prevent sensitive data leakage over insecure channels or stolen mobile devices.
Implementing global e-invoicing with guaranteed legal certainty
Explaining the role local tax compliance plays in successful supply chain management and e-business and how leading global brands are addressing this.
Boost IT visibility and business value
How building a great service catalog relieves pressure points and demonstrates the value of IT service management.
Designing a Defense for Mobile Applications
Learn about the various considerations for defending mobile applications - from the application architecture itself to the myriad testing technologies.
Build a business case: developing custom apps
Learn how to maximize the value of custom applications by accelerating and simplifying their development.