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New BlackBerry Browser Enhancements with Eclipse - Smartphone Development

As a BlackBerry developer, it makes sense that a majority -- if not all -- of the apps you create are business applications. That's not likely to change in the near future. Fortunately, though, there are some great tools available to make your job easier.

  1. Building Business Apps with the BlackBerry Browser
  2. Making the Most of the Platform
  3. New BlackBerry Browser Enhancements with Eclipse
By: Joe eitel
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August 18, 2009

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Thanks to Eclipse, developers now have a variety of enhancements they can utilize when building their business applications with the BlackBerry browser. For example, they now have support for debugging their business applications with the use of the BlackBerry smartphone simulators. Developers can now also set breakpoints on JavaScript code and benefit from seamless integration with Debug, Variables, and Expressions views with the help of the Eclipse plug-in. With Eclipse’s profiling capabilities, developers can also benefit from visibility into the content of XMLHttpRequest requests and response data, as well as visibility into data traffic for web-based content, such as images, CSS, JavaScript, and HTML.

Final Notes on Building Business Apps with the BB Browser

If you are familiar with Java, chances are you’re not going to have any problems developing business applications using BlackBerry’s browser. Once you understand some of the following basic information, you can hit the ground running.

The BlackBerry platform is based on the CLDC, which includes support for MIDP 2.0. That being said, it’s important to point out that many BlackBerry-specific classes are also provided. Before you write your apps you’ll have to decide if you’re going to write a BlackBerry business application or a MIDP business app.

When developing a MIDP business application, you can only use the APIs exposed by the CLDC and MIDP standards. Your business app will run on BlackBerry handheld devices and on a limited number of other types of phones, but it won't be able to utilize any special BlackBerry features.

It goes without saying that most BlackBerry developers choose to build BlackBerry-specific business applications. This, of course, requires that you learn BlackBerry-specific APIs, which includes new user interface classes and the BlackBerry Java Development Environment (JDE) in order to develop your business applications.

The JDE is free to download and works with the Java Software Development Kit. This will provide you with everything necessary to create, package, test and debug your BlackBerry business apps.

>>> More Smartphone Development Articles          >>> More By Joe eitel

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