Sun and Texas Instruments team up for Java apps on mobiles

Java pioneer Sun Microsystems and mobile-phone chip maker Texas Instruments are joining forces to make it easier for phone makers...

Java pioneer Sun Microsystems and mobile-phone chip maker Texas Instruments are joining forces to make it easier for phone makers and mobile operators to get Java-based applications out to end users.

The companies' initiative to bring together Texas chips and Sun software is designed to streamline the development of phones that support Java applications such as games, information services and mobile enterprise applications, and reduce costs.

Texas will include Sun's implementation of the CLDC (Connected Limited Device Configuration) standard on its TCS wireless chip sets, saving handset makers the step of working individually with Sun to integrate that software, said Tom Pollard, director of marketing for Texas' chipset business.

Java applications access the Sun CLDC software, which Sun calls CLDC HI (HotSpot Implementation), for computation, according to Eric Chu, director of J2ME (Java 2 Micro Edition) platform marketing at Sun.

Texas will also include Sun's implementation of MIDP (Mobile Information Device Profile) 2.0, Chu said. MIDP is the application environment used by developers to create the parts of a mobile Java application that end users see.

Phone manufacturers will be able to buy TCS chipsets with the Sun software built in. In addition, the two companies will offer implementations of CLDC HI and MIDP optimised for Texas mobile application processors, which it calls its OMAP (open multimedia applications processor) line.

These application processors normally ship without such software included, but there will be available versions of CLDC and MIDP which can be implemented on OMAP with relative ease, Pollard said.

The companies will validate their Java implementation on the OMAP processors with the Sun Content Delivery Server, ensuring mobile operators will be able to provide services to such handsets from the server. Java servers from other companies also will work with those handsets based on Java standards, Chu said.

The joint initiative will target a wide range of mobile phone technologies, including GSM/GPRS, Edge (Enhanced Data Rates for GSM Evolution), CDMA (code-division multiple access) and UMTS (Universal Mobile Telecommunications System).

Stephen Lawson writes for IDG News Service

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