Concrete Options @ Application Development

Qamer's View on Dev. Options

Cross Platform Mobile Development Frameworks

Posted by Qamer Farooq on March 7, 2011

As the mobile application development is continue to expand, its becoming a challenging job to publish your apps. for all major mobile platforms. At this point you have to choose some mobile platforms and to leave some of them from your plans. In this situation cross platform mobile apps. development frameworks could help you, the idea is to write once and run anywhere without learning five or six major SDKs. Though they are not the perfect answer to all of your needs, but still they are pretty good to manage a big share of your requirements.

Here are four mostly used cross-platform development frameworks which are used to deliver “write once and run anywhere” experience to the developers.

PhoneGap
PhoneGap is an HTML5 app platform that allows you to author native applications with web technologies and get access to APIs and app stores.

Language : HTML, Javascript
Platforms : iPhone, Android, Blackberry, Palm WebOS, Symbian, Windows Mobile support
Device capability support :  Geo Location , Vibration, Accelerometer, Sound (play & record), Camera, File system IO, and Gesture / Multitouch. more detail.
Open Source License : MIT
Free : YES
Community size todate : Messages= 18361, Users= 4696
IDE : Eclipse-based environment
Distribution format : Native distribution format of each platform

Rhodes
Rhomobile’s free and open source mobile application framework Rhodes lets you quickly build native mobile applications for all major smartphones. These are true native device applications (not mobile web apps)

Language : HTML, Javascript, Ruby
Platforms : iPhone, Windows Mobile, Blackberry, Symbian and Android
Device capability support : Geo Location, PIM contacts and calendar, camera, native mapping, push, barcode, signature capture, and Bluetooth. more detail.
Open Source License : MIT,  but commercial license is also available for enterprise grade support.
Free : YES
Community size todate : Messages= 11547, Users = 972
IDE : Any IDE that supports Ruby. Eclipse can also be used with Ruby plugin.
Distribution format : Ruby with HTML interface features compiled through an interpreter into native applications.

Appcelerator Titanium
A free and open source application development platform, Titanium lets you create native mobile, tablet and desktop  application experiences using existing web skills like Javascript, HTML, CSS, Python, Ruby, and PHP.

Language : HTML, Javascript
Platforms : iPhone, Android
Device capability support : Geo Location, Vibration support, Accelerometer support, Sound (play/record) support, Camera support,File system IO support, Gesture / Multitouch support and Contacts.
Open Source License : Apache Public License v2, Proprietary
Free : YES
Community size todate : Messages: 11917, Users = 1.5 Million
IDE : Titanium Developer
Distribution format : Native distribution format of each platform

MoSync
MoSync is a Software Development Kit which allows you to develop applications for all the major mobile platforms using a single environment and C/C++ code base on Windows or OS X.

Language : C/C++
Platforms : iPhone, Android, Windows Mobile, Symbian, JavaME and Moblin platforms. (Blackberry and Windows Phone 7 support is coming shortly).
Device capability support : Geo Location, PIM, Camera access(comming soon), Basic audio,Stylus/touch input,Vibration and Bluetooth (except iPhone). more detail.
License : GPL v2 (plus commercial edition)
Free : NO (if you don’t publish your source code), YES (If you publish your source code)
Community size todate : Messages: 2908, Users: 12706
IDE : Eclipse-based environment
Distribution format : SIS, CAB, JAD, JAR, APK, OTA deployment

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5 Responses to “Cross Platform Mobile Development Frameworks”

  1. Atif Riaz said

    Nice article. Model Driven Development is Next big thing. It would be better if you present all this comparison in tabular format so that its’s easy to compare

  2. microman said

    Theres something really fishy about the appcellerator community, 12000 messages and 1’500’000 users, thats not consistant with any community Ive ever seen, it just doesnt add up.

    • You are quite right about that, and that is the only thing which is not digestible for me too, though the mentioned message count is from their official community.

  3. I’m rather familiar with MoSync, as I am a regular contributor to their open-source effort. Surprised to see you’ve listed it as “Free: NO”. As it’s available under GPLv2 it’s absolutely as free as it gets.

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