Oracle hopes to entice mobile developers with new framework

The Mobile Application Framework works with a variety of development tools and languages

Oracle is hoping it can attract more developers with MAF (Mobile Application Framework), which aims to simplify the development of cross-platform enterprise apps for smartphones and tablets.

As a result of the growing number of smartphones and tablets employees have, software vendors are increasingly focusing on how to make enterprise applications more mobile friendly. On Monday, Oracle announced updates to its Mobile Suite, which aims to do just that.

The heart of the new release is MAF, which builds on the cross-platform development tools Oracle already offers. The framework lets developers choose between the JDeveloper IDE (integrated development environment) or Enterprise Pack for Eclipse. Developers can also choose among a number of development languages, including Java, JavaScript and HTML5, when developing native Android and iOS apps, according to Oracle.

The framework also offers more than 80 ready-made user interface components and support for Apache Cordova plug-ins, which can be used across different OSes. Apache Cordova is a set of device interfaces that lets developers access features such cameras or accelerometers.

One of the challenges presented by the growing number of mobile enterprise apps is how to secure them and the data they can access. But Oracle hopes to solve that issue by integrating MAF with its Mobile Security Suite, which comes with features for application containerization, advanced authentication and authorization, and integration with social network log-ins.

The updated Mobile Suite is available now.

This is the second time in less than a week that Oracle has upgraded its products to make life easier for mobile developers. On Thursday, the company launched SOA Suite 12c, with the intent of making it simpler to integrate mobile applications with the software.

To accomplish, this Oracle has implemented better support for REST (Representational State Transfer) and the JSON (JavaScript Object Notation) integration standards. Both use a lightweight architecture, which makes them a good fit for mobile applications. In addition, SOA Suite 12c can automatically convert XML to JSON.

SOA Suite 12c is available on Oracle's Technology Network and scheduled for general availability in July.

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Mikael Ricknäs

IDG News Service
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