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Useful Tips on Smartphone Application Development for BlackBerry PlayBook

Published on 23 June 14
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Useful Tips on Smartphone Application Development for BlackBerry PlayBook - Image 1
It is a techno world today, where every other person is seen with either a tablet or a smartphone in their hands. From a teenager to a top-notch executive of a company, everyone these days is busy displaying their love for gadgets by either owning one or gifting the same to their close people. When the entire world is getting increasingly passionate about Smartphones and tablets, BlackBerry PlayBook has become one of the most coveted products, that is enjoying a decent market share in popularity and sale. Owing to this evolved market scenario, developers are seeing smartphone application development for BlackBerry PlayBook in a new light.

BlackBerry PlayBook is nothing but a mini tablet computer that works on HTML5 and Flash Player 10.1 for browser animation and graphics. Equipped with a 7-inch multi-touch screen, 1 GB of RAM, 1GHz dual-core CPU and 16GB, 32GB, or 64GB of storage; BlackBerry PlayBook offers amazing look and feel, and speed for users. The major highlight of this tablet device is its operating system that has been optimized to take benefit of all the horsepower required to drive this gadget to its optimum level of usage.

Often, it has been observed that the operating system of existing smartphones become incapable of meeting the expectations of tablet users. This has been problematic for not only users, but for developers as well, who have to separately create same application in two different manners for smartphones and tablets to make it reach people, regardless of the platform they use. Keeping this in mind, the operating system of the PlayBook was designed in such a way that it befits the tablet market perfectly. The BlackBerry Tablet OS is powered by QNX Neutrino real-time operating system, otherwise known as RTOS, which happens to have a unique microkernel architecture that helps in creating an unrivaled experience in the market for the end users. This makes the operating system of BlackBerry capable of seamlessly and simultaneously running applications that are developed in different development environments, without having any distinct impact on the user.

It is this compelling feature of the BlackBerry Tablet OS that enables developers to utilize their existing tools and skills to develop applications with any one of the several popular development approaches. Instead of forcing them to learn new languages, tools and skills to build applications, BlackBerry PlayBook permit developers ample scope to create great user experience with the tools they already know. Apart from standalone app development, PlayBook also supports Flash Player 10.1 and HTML5 in the browser for a remarkable web experience for developers and users as well.

When it comes to smartphone application development for BlackBerry PlayBook, there are four different approaches that the operating system of this tablet supports. These include Adobe AIR, Java, HTML5, CSS and Javascript using BlackBerry Webworks, and Native C or C++. For this post, our area of focus is Adobe AIR and how it supports development of apps on BlackBerry PlayBook. Using and implementing Adobe AIR, developers enjoy opportunities to innovate and provide additional functionality to users to take maximum benefit of both hardware and feature sets. These added functionalities include having graphics-intensive content and hardware-accelerated playback of video, both within AIR apps and in the browser to allow high-fidelity and smooth viewing experience for users. BlackBerry PlayBook permits developers to create Super App experiences for seamless communication between AIR apps. Other added functionalities include leveraging BlackBerry PlayBookâs WebKit browser to display HTML and Flash content of rich hybrid applications, and allowing app notifications to being events generated by AIR apps to the userâs notice; even when the app is running in the background.

To take advantage of these and many such features, developers can choose any of the three development approaches that let them build an AIR application for the BlackBerry PlayBook. First approach is using Adobe AIR with ActionScript 3.0 extensions. This is possibly the fastest approach, if developers want to bring their existing AIR and Flash apps to the BlackBerry PlayBook platform. In case a developer already has an AIR app using the mobile profile, then the majority of the code will work perfectly on BlackBerry Tablet OS. The ActionScript extensions can provide components of user-interface, support for multimedia, multi-touch, and gestures. Simply by downloading the Tablet OS SDK of Adobe AIR, developers can start developing apps or port already developed apps to the BlackBerry platform with the help of service extensions.

The SDK includes a plug-in for Adobe Flash Builder and command-line tools. The plug-in provides developers a fully featured development environment, with the help of which developers can package apps, deploy these to simulator, and launch a correlative debugging session. On the other hand, the command-line tools allow developers to write their own ActionScript code in their chosen development environment. If cross-platform compatibility is what a developer is aiming for with his application, then the second approach of using Flash Builder 4.0 or Burrito is the correct option. This version of builder supports cross-platform user-interface components that help developers to port their apps developed in a different environment to BlackBerry without any issue. Moreover, this version allows designers to take benefit of the in-built drag-and-drop user-interface builder to make visually rich applications for the BlackBerry Playbook, without putting in much effort.

The third and final approach for developing apps for BlackBerry Playbook is using Flash Professional. Developers and designers who prefer to work on Flash can rest assured that their apps should ideally work flawlessly in the browser when launched in the BlackBerry PlayBook. To make sure whether their developed apps work well or not, developers can use the PlayBook Simulator to test their applications in the browser. They can also use the packaging, signing and deployment tools to package their existing Flash assets to create their very own AIR apps and start monetizing their implementation through the App World of BlackBerry.

Thus, employing any of the above mentioned approaches, developers can very own develop their smartphone apps for BlackBerry PlayBook. Even if they do not create platform specific applications, they can create apps that can be ported into the BlackBerry environment to make it accessible by various users as well.
















Useful Tips on Smartphone Application Development for BlackBerry PlayBook - Image 1

It is a techno world today, where every other person is seen with either a tablet or a smartphone in their hands. From a teenager to a top-notch executive of a company, everyone these days is busy displaying their love for gadgets by either owning one or gifting the same to their close people. When the entire world is getting increasingly passionate about Smartphones and tablets, BlackBerry PlayBook has become one of the most coveted products, that is enjoying a decent market share in popularity and sale. Owing to this evolved market scenario, developers are seeing smartphone application development for BlackBerry PlayBook in a new light.

BlackBerry PlayBook is nothing but a mini tablet computer that works on HTML5 and Flash Player 10.1 for browser animation and graphics. Equipped with a 7-inch multi-touch screen, 1 GB of RAM, 1GHz dual-core CPU and 16GB, 32GB, or 64GB of storage; BlackBerry PlayBook offers amazing look and feel, and speed for users. The major highlight of this tablet device is its operating system that has been optimized to take benefit of all the horsepower required to drive this gadget to its optimum level of usage.

Often, it has been observed that the operating system of existing smartphones become incapable of meeting the expectations of tablet users. This has been problematic for not only users, but for developers as well, who have to separately create same application in two different manners for smartphones and tablets to make it reach people, regardless of the platform they use. Keeping this in mind, the operating system of the PlayBook was designed in such a way that it befits the tablet market perfectly. The BlackBerry Tablet OS is powered by QNX Neutrino real-time operating system, otherwise known as RTOS, which happens to have a unique microkernel architecture that helps in creating an unrivaled experience in the market for the end users. This makes the operating system of BlackBerry capable of seamlessly and simultaneously running applications that are developed in different development environments, without having any distinct impact on the user.

It is this compelling feature of the BlackBerry Tablet OS that enables developers to utilize their existing tools and skills to develop applications with any one of the several popular development approaches. Instead of forcing them to learn new languages, tools and skills to build applications, BlackBerry PlayBook permit developers ample scope to create great user experience with the tools they already know. Apart from standalone app development, PlayBook also supports Flash Player 10.1 and HTML5 in the browser for a remarkable web experience for developers and users as well.

When it comes to smartphone application development for BlackBerry PlayBook, there are four different approaches that the operating system of this tablet supports. These include Adobe AIR, Java, HTML5, CSS and Javascript using BlackBerry Webworks, and Native C or C++. For this post, our area of focus is Adobe AIR and how it supports development of apps on BlackBerry PlayBook. Using and implementing Adobe AIR, developers enjoy opportunities to innovate and provide additional functionality to users to take maximum benefit of both hardware and feature sets. These added functionalities include having graphics-intensive content and hardware-accelerated playback of video, both within AIR apps and in the browser to allow high-fidelity and smooth viewing experience for users. BlackBerry PlayBook permits developers to create Super App experiences for seamless communication between AIR apps. Other added functionalities include leveraging BlackBerry PlayBookâs WebKit browser to display HTML and Flash content of rich hybrid applications, and allowing app notifications to being events generated by AIR apps to the userâs notice; even when the app is running in the background.

To take advantage of these and many such features, developers can choose any of the three development approaches that let them build an AIR application for the BlackBerry PlayBook. First approach is using Adobe AIR with ActionScript 3.0 extensions. This is possibly the fastest approach, if developers want to bring their existing AIR and Flash apps to the BlackBerry PlayBook platform. In case a developer already has an AIR app using the mobile profile, then the majority of the code will work perfectly on BlackBerry Tablet OS. The ActionScript extensions can provide components of user-interface, support for multimedia, multi-touch, and gestures. Simply by downloading the Tablet OS SDK of Adobe AIR, developers can start developing apps or port already developed apps to the BlackBerry platform with the help of service extensions.

The SDK includes a plug-in for Adobe Flash Builder and command-line tools. The plug-in provides developers a fully featured development environment, with the help of which developers can package apps, deploy these to simulator, and launch a correlative debugging session. On the other hand, the command-line tools allow developers to write their own ActionScript code in their chosen development environment. If cross-platform compatibility is what a developer is aiming for with his application, then the second approach of using Flash Builder 4.0 or Burrito is the correct option. This version of builder supports cross-platform user-interface components that help developers to port their apps developed in a different environment to BlackBerry without any issue. Moreover, this version allows designers to take benefit of the in-built drag-and-drop user-interface builder to make visually rich applications for the BlackBerry Playbook, without putting in much effort.

The third and final approach for developing apps for BlackBerry Playbook is using Flash Professional. Developers and designers who prefer to work on Flash can rest assured that their apps should ideally work flawlessly in the browser when launched in the BlackBerry PlayBook. To make sure whether their developed apps work well or not, developers can use the PlayBook Simulator to test their applications in the browser. They can also use the packaging, signing and deployment tools to package their existing Flash assets to create their very own AIR apps and start monetizing their implementation through the App World of BlackBerry.

Thus, employing any of the above mentioned approaches, developers can very own develop their smartphone apps for BlackBerry PlayBook. Even if they do not create platform specific applications, they can create apps that can be ported into the BlackBerry environment to make it accessible by various users as well.

This blog is listed under Development & Implementations and Mobility Community

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