Wednesday, June 03, 2009

Going native on BlackBerry

Our application is currently based on Java ME and uses the lcdui to a 100%, even though there are some fixes to make it work better on BlackBerry. Since BlackBerry is getting more and more popular in the market we have decided to make a version that uses the BlackBerry native UI instead of Java ME standard lcdui.

BlackBerry does not allow combining its native UI with lcdui, which means we will have to convert everything, including the midlet. The majority of the code is however in our own classes, since 90% of tha application is Canvas-based. It seems quite possible to make them work in both environments.

Major changes will be:
- our midlet is replaced by a UIApplication
- the Canvas will be replaced by a MainScreen
- instead of the List we use we will have a KeywordFilterField, which will gives the users better functionality.

Our components will be placed in the MainScreen (instead of a Java ME Canvas). To make this work we will use an interface for painting with two different implementations, that encapsulate Java ME Graphics and BlackBerry Graphics. We will also need to handle the different Font classes and lcdui Image versus BlackBerry Bitmap.

Our immediate gains will be:
- scalable fonts, which is a problem for us now, since the Lcdui fonts on BlackBerry Bold are very large
- some UI improvements, like the KeyWordFilterField instead of the List etc
We will also gain access to possiblities like opening an input field on top of ouyr Canvas, with we really need and have a better looking app.

1 comment:

Kevin said...

Hi,

I have an lcdu.Image object that I need to draw in a UiApplication. Can you teach how to do that?

Thanks!