Oracle outlines mobile plans for Java

Ever since Ellison and his team of Oracles moved into the House of the Setting Sun, people have been wondering what he would do with Java.

It seems that the plan might be to try and push it onto the world as a mobile OS for small form-factor devices.

Adam Messinger, Oracle’s vice president of development for Fusion Middleware, told the Server Side Java Symposium in Las Vegas that Oracle was improving the Java Platform Micro Edition (Java ME) which is the version of Java built for devices.

According to InfoWorld, Messinger said that in the mobile space, Java ME was “far from dead” as there are three billion devices that run it and new gear is being shipped at a “tremendous rate.”

Among these is the BlackBerry smartphones though they run the BlackBerry OS for their smartphone capabilities.

It looks like the difficulty that Oracle is having pushing Java ME onto mobile devices is that pesky legal action it is having with Google over Android, over, er, Java patents. This row prevents Oracle from pushing Java ME onto Android gear.

While Java ME did not get a proper shake of the stick at Sun, Oracle wants to change that and introduce Java Specification Requests, which are formal amendments to official Java technology platforms, to improve Java ME application development via capabilities such as annotations, for metadata, and library changes.

This will put more power in the hands of developers. Other plans include updating Java ME via features harvested from Java Platform, Standard Edition (SE) 6.

Meanwhile the enterprise version of Java, officially known as Java Platform, Enterprise Edition (Java EE), Java EE 7 is due out by the end of 2012 and that will provide a foundation for the cloud.