Oracle Updates ADF Mobile

Oracle this week released an update of its mobile Application Development Framework (ADF) forJava Enterprise Edition (Java EE).

In Version 1.1 the company added a number of features, including device-native push notification, a new device-integration infrastructure based on Apache Cordova, full file attachment viewing, updated mobile OS support and the usual bug fixes and performance enhancements.

ADF Mobile, first released last October, is HTML5- and Java-based, and aimed at developers looking to build and deploy enterprise apps to mobile environments (including iOS and Android) from a single code base. It was created to simplify enterprise app development and to attract developers to Oracle's Fusion Middleware ecosystem. It provides developers with an ADF that enables code reuse through a hybrid architecture that combines open web technologies (HTML5, JavaScript, CSS) and Java enterprise tools. At the heart of that architecture is a lightweight (headless) Java Virtual Machine (JVM) that supports the application logic written in Java. What this means, Bill Pataky, VP of product management for Oracle's tools and frameworks group explained, is that you can run Java code on iOS. 

"This is something we developed for ourselves, just like we did ADF itself, so that we could build our applications out on mobile devices, and do it in a smart way," Pataky told ADTmag in an earlier interview. "Oracle's got one of the biggest portfolios of apps out there, and when you consider what it's like to move all of them to multiple mobile devices and keep up with multiple releases of multiple devices… well… Things get absolutely insane."

ADF Mobile was originally billed as a productivity framework, and it's designed to provide coders possessing less than an expert's command of Java EE with visual, declarative, and guided-coding features. Both the original ADF and ADF Mobile rely on a declarative programming model.

The company is billing Oracle ADF Mobile as the only cross-platform solution based on Java that enables application development for both iOS and Android devices. It offers Java developers "an easy way to become mobile developers," said Chris Tonas, vice president Oracle's Application Development Tools group, in a statement.

Among the new features in this release is support for the open-source Apache Cordova framework, a platform for building native mobile apps with HTML, CSS, and JavaScript. Cordova is designed to allow developers to build an app without native code using Web technologies hosted in the app locally. The result is an app that is portable among device platforms with few changes.

This release also adds support for device-native push notification, which allows devs to push critical events and updates from enterprise applications and middleware instantly to their mobile apps; a new digital badging feature that allows devs to give mobile app users visual indicators of events and updates; automatic testing support via JavaScript APIs; more data visualization components (including a rating gauge and a dial gauge); support for "right-to-left" languages, such as Arabic and Hebrew; the ability for system integrators and ISVs to deliver Oracle ADF Mobile apps as an archive "allowing end-customers to sign the application with proper certificates;" and support for full-file attachment viewing, which makes it possible for mobile apps to display different file attachment types "abstracting mobile platform differences related to file handling."

About the Author

John K. Waters is the editor in chief of a number of sites, with a focus on high-end development, AI and future tech. He's been writing about cutting-edge technologies and culture of Silicon Valley for more than two decades, and he's written more than a dozen books. He also co-scripted the documentary film Silicon Valley: A 100 Year Renaissance, which aired on PBS.  He can be reached at [email protected].