Symbian, Nitobi join on mobile phone app dev

Smartphone platform provider Symbian Foundation is joining forces with mobile framework builder Nitobi in an effort to simplify application development for Symbian devices.

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Smartphone platform provider Symbian Foundation is joining forces with mobile framework builder Nitobi in an effort to simplify application development for Symbian devices.

The two organisations will today flesh out the integration of Symbian's Web application-building tools with Nitobi's PhoneGap cross-platform framework for mobile application development.

Nitobi also will contribute PhoneGap to the Symbian Web Runtime, to be included in a Web extension package to the Symbian 3 platform.

The arrangement makes it easier to use the PhoneGap runtime on Symbian phones, said Paul Beusterien, head of Symbian Development Tools.

PhoneGap features APIs to access phone capabilities such as accelerometers. "You can use those APIs in addition to standard JavaScript, HTML, CSS to write Web apps but then you can build and deploy for iPhone, Android, Symbian, RIM," Beusterien said.

PhoneGap is described on the Nitobi website as an open source solution designed to give Web developers JavaScript access to mobile device features, such as cameras and GPS.

The integration makes it easier to attract developers to the Symbian platform, Beusterien said. Developers, for example, could take a PhoneGap application and more easily bring that to Symbian, he said.

Symbian's Web development tools can be accessed at Symbian's developer site. The Symbian open source platform was seeded by Nokia and now has other contributors, Beusterien said.

The Symbian-Nitobi alliance is being announced at the O'Reilly Open Source Convention (OSCON) in Portland, Ore.

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