The programming language Java® was released in 1995 with original development commencing in 1991. The development language has many key areas of use, including online or Internet applications and applications designed to run on handheld devices. Mobile Java® development is the process of creating applications utilizing the Java® programming language specifically for mobile, handheld devices, such as mobile telephones, modern music players, and personal organizers.
Pieces of software developed in the Java® programming language have the ability to run on any hardware as the platform, or operating system, for the software is actually included within the language itself. This portability led to the language being marketed as "write once, run anywhere" software. The software that is designed to be used within a web browser is known as an applet, a functional name that is used to describe the program as a small application. Software packages created from mobile Java® development are commonly known as apps, a short form of the term application.
The ability of the programming language to create software that will run on any hardware has led to a large rise is mobile Java® development. Smart phones and organizers, along with other feature-rich mobile telephones, contain a large number of individual applications for specific functionality. Modern telephones feature the ability to download and install new Java® applications from online stores, for example, Apple’s App Store for iPhones and high-end iPod devices and the Android Marketplace for devices operating on Google’s Android operating system (OS).
The term mobile Java® development is merely descriptive for the development of Java-based software applications that are designed specifically to run on mobile hardware. Particular considerations that need to be taken into account when programming applications for mobile platforms include screen size, control methods, and integration into the form factor of the devices on which the program can be installed. The development of Java® applications for mobile devices is not limited to major software production houses as it also provides a platform for independent and novice Java® developers.
Mobile Java® development has led to the reemergence of so-called "bedroom programmers." The use of the programming language provides any hobbyist programmer or developer with the opportunity to distribute their software through application download centers. Several independent coders have embraced the concept of mobile Java® development as a means to distribute their software and ideas through a managed marketplace. These hobbyists, actively developing software applications for mobile devices, will likely provide longevity to the hardware and to the concept of developing Java® software applications for mobile devices.