WOW, Nokia and Microsoft getting together to put Silverlight on Nokia devices. This includes Nokia S60, S40 and Tablet (Maemo) devices. Thats really cool!
Nokia’s official press release is here.
Here are some notable excerpts from deferent sources:
The expectation is that Silverlight will be embedded on new Nokia devices and downloadable to those already in the market.
^ view source
At MIX, Nokia will demonstrate Silverlight applications on its Series 60 and Series 40 handsets, and announce a beta program for its runtime. Phones with Silverlight should be on sale from the end of this year.
Microsoft will be developing a portability kit so Nokia can port Silverlight from the desktop to its mobile platform; that kit eventually will be available to other handset providers as well, Honeybone said.
^ view source
Microsoft chose to work with Nokia because it has the largest market share of mobile phones, but it will sign on with other handset makers to create ports of Silverlight, Case said.
All the main features of Silverlight, including video and interactive Web application development, will be included in all mobile versions.
But there will be some device-specific restraints, which means Microsoft will create editions of Silverlight for different mobile platforms, he said.
^ view source
Support for S40 platform is great move. So, Nokia making Silverlight to their own proprietary S40 platform means other companies can do it as well = more number of devices from mid-level to high-end smartphones.
Microsoft is now looking quite aggressive with Silverlight strategy, which is a good sign. Its always good to have competition.
My thoughts about Flash Lite and Silverlight Mobile
Adobe Flash Lite is here for long time, but it has been moving forward really slow. We have seen three updates to Flash Lite from 2003, but all the updates focused on performance and memory management, except from Flash Lite 1.x to 2, which added AS1/2 support.
Flash Lite is implemented in deferent modes. Which include wallpaper, screensaver, MMI/Phone menu system (Man Machine Interface, only available to OEMs), and standalone. The standalone implementation is something which offer developers to make applications and casual games, but its very much limited with access to device specific functions, like simple File I/O.
Recently released Flash Lite 3 adds FLV video support, but it adds limitation for application to be local-only or network-only. Applications made for Flash Lite 1.1 and 2 which use network fails silently on Flash Lite 3.
The other limitation is Flash Lite player available from Adobe is for developers “only”. Developers cannot distribute it with their games / applications or suggest users to download from Adobe’s website. They have to wait for a year or so, for devices to come with pre-installed version of Flash Lite that application requires.
Adobe have two big products (Flash Cast and Flash Home) which are based on same Flash Lite technology, but targeted towards mobile operators. Not available to developers, even for development.
For what I see is, Flash Lite standalone was developed to prepare developers for Flash Cast and Flash Home products. Flash Lite does not feature proper pack-and-distribute system, like J2ME, PyS60 and now Nokia’s WRT have. But there are solutions like SWF2Go, to tackle that.
Microsoft is coming from behind, and they have been learning from mistakes Macromedia/Adobe made in past. Silverlight Mobile can learn a lot from J2ME and Adobe’s Flash Lite *experiment*.
In another article, I found that Silverlight will eventually come as offline as well, just like AIR. So, we can expect an offline version of Silverlight Mobile as well.
I’m now waiting for the beta version of Silverlight Mobile *runtime* to see what it have to offer for developers.
This post looks a bit anti-Adobe, but its a fact that I’m a long-time Flash / Flash Lite developer and I hope Adobe could see what I have been trying to highlight here :)
// chall3ng3r //