Tuesday, March 4, 2008

Nokia To Ship Silverlight on Mobiles

Nokia announced today that it will be installing Silverlight on S60, S40 and Nokia internet tablets. Silverlight is Microsoft's technology to create rich internet applications (RIA) similar to Adobe's Flash. By adding Silverlight to its phones, Nokia thinks that it can get a lot of developers to start off on its S60 & S40 platforms. Nokia already ships Flashlite with its mobile phones which is used to run applications made in Flash and Silverlight will be a direct competition to Flashlite.

Microsoft is pushing Silverlight as the next generation platform for developing rich internet applications and has promised it to be completely cross-platform and available on a host of different platforms including Linux and Mac. Today's announcement from Nokia proves that Microsoft is truly committed to make Silverlight applications usable from a host of devices.

Earlier, when Microsoft created the .NET framework it had mentioned platform-independence as one of its feature. Although this was true from a programming language point of view, Microsoft does not release the full .NET Framework Runtime on all platforms. Other projects like Mono help run .NET apps on Linux. On the other hand, although Silverlight is based on .NET it uses a different CLR (Common Runtime Environment). Silverlight CLR is like a browser plugin and is showing progress on becoming true cross-platform technology.

Silverlight is based on C#, which makes it easy for developers with knowledge of C# to move to programming mobile RIAs. Also, Microsoft is ready with Silverlight v2.0. All of this just goes to show that Microsoft is moving really fast to capture the mobile phone market. It still has a lot to do with Silverlight and one of its current missions would be to get other handset manufacturers on the Silverlight bandwagon.

The mobile internet world is really hotting up with Google also bringing Gears to mobile phones. I'm sure Adobe will add new features to Flashlite in the coming months. If you are a web developer and want to get your apps into mobile phones, this is your time!!

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