RIM releases BlackBerry Java SDK 7.0


In a bid to attract more developers to the BlackBerry platform, RIM has announced the beta release of its BlackBerry Java SDK 7.0.

The new version of the SDK provides app developers with emulation tools for the latest BlackBerry Bold 9900 series handsets, as well as capabilities for developing apps using near field communications (NFC) remote data transfer - which can be used in remote payment via mobile handsets and is supported by the 9900 series.

It is smart timing on RIM's part as interest in NFC continues to grow, getting developers working quickly on a technology which could become very popular with business.

As well as Orange and BarclayCard launching their own NFC technology in the UK, Google has announced its Wallet system alongside MasterCard in the US.

Another focus for the new toolset is greater support for the development of location-based apps, with enhanced features for handset magnetometers, digital compasses, advanced mapping and augmented reality.

User interface development tools have also been tweaked to allow layering of UI elements and there are enhancements to the command framework, as well as additional support for barcode and image scanning.

The BlackBerry Java Development Environment and the BlackBerry Java plugin for Eclipse have been updated to support BlackBerry OS 7. RIM also stated BlackBerry App World would now be accepting app submissions for the new handsets.