Analysts have welcomed Nokia joining the Eclipse foundation as an important step towards developing applications across fixed and mobile platforms.
Nokia announced last week that it had joined the Eclipse Foundation as a strategic developer and board member and that it will support the Eclipse open source community by contributing software and developers. It joins Ericsson as the second major mobile player to throw its weight behind the open source development environment initiative.
Nokia will lead a project to create a framework for mobile Java developer tools. The company also plans to use the Eclipse tools platform widely in its tools portfolio and will contribute to several existing Eclipse projects beyond the scope of Java.
Eclipse is an open source community whose projects are focused on providing an extensible development platform and application frameworks for building software. Major companies which already support Eclipse include Ericsson, HP, IBM, Intel and SAP.
Mark Blowers, senior research analyst with Butler Group, said, “It’s very significant. Eclipse has been going on for some years and most major players are involved. With Nokia joining it’s an indication of mobile software development going mainstream. If you want to produce mobile applications that people can use it’s important to be part of the major open source movement. In the past vendors have left themselves stranded on islands of development but now we will start to see efforts towards a single environment for end-to-end development across all channels.”
Earlier this year Forrester Research predicted the Eclipse programming environment will become the de facto standard for software developers who need an alternative to Microsoft's Visual Studio.