Posted by: gowrisivaprasad | November 13, 2007

Google Android and NetBeans

Android Logo Netbeans Logo

Jonathan Schwartz, CEO of Sun Microsystems, in this blog entry seems to indicate that NetBeans is a supported IDE for Android. This is what he specifically says:

blockquotes.gifI’d also like Sun to be the first platform software company to commit to a complete developer environment around the platform, as we throw Sun’s NetBeans developer platform for mobile devices behind the effort. We’ve obviously done a ton of work to support developers on all Java based platforms, and were pleased to add Google’s Android to the list.blockquotes.gif

But in the Android SDK announcement and documentation, Eclipse is the only supported IDE. There is no mention of NetBeans.

Where does this place what Jonathan said? Was he saying that Sun will build a NetBeans plugin for Andriod and release it on its own, or is he speculating that Google might add NetBeans support later? Maybe he was just hoping for some hype by association with a hot news (certainly not his style though)!

Given all the documentation that Google has provided for Android SDK, it should not be hard to build a NetBeans plugin for Android. But it is kind of a blow to Sun that Google chose to do its own Java VM implementation as well not support NetBeans as a supported IDE. Maybe Google didn’t like CDDL license.

Usually Jonathan’s blog gets mostly supportive and appreciative comments. But they just took it out on him for this entry.

Update:  There seems to be a good amount of interest in using NetBeans for Android development. This is a good opportunity for the NetBeans community to step and fill the need.



  1. what I don’t understand is why Google is trying to create some funky Java derivative. And trying to abscond with a Linux kernel and ship it under an apache license. Seems like folks are taking them to task for trying to pull a fast one, too. Plus, they don’t have a phone… just hype.

  2. Perry: My guess is Google wanted control or didn’t want to maintain compatibility with TCK. They probably predicted that they would want to diverge from the standard in the future and to go their own way from the start would be the easiest for them.

    It is unfair that they want the Java syntax that everyone is familiar with (meaning, that much easier developer adoption) but don’t want the standard Java VM.

    I am surprised Sun is not crying fowl, given all the prior noise they have created around companies forking Java.

  3. The standard desktop JVM is too heavy for a smartphone & the mobile J2ME virtual machine is too limited. So they built the Dalvik VM which is right about b/w the two & is highly optimized for the Linuz environment on which it runs. I guess Sun is silent because Android could be the single greatest thing that has happened to make Java popular in a long time. Also Sun could fork Android by itself and replace the DVM with a JVM hence getting a whole new OS to themselves rather than run their VMs on the motley symbian and Windows mobile.

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