Embedded devices traditionally were programmed using C or assembler. This gave developers a lot of control and allowed them to write for a very small footprint, but lacked reusability and flexibility, and slowed time to market for new devices.
Now in light of new, powerful processors, ubiquitous networking and companies’ never-ending need for data, embedded devices are rapidly moving to Java software. Finally 9 million+ Java developers can get in the Internet of Things (IoT) game using all their favorite tools! The potential benefits are overwhelming – Write Once Run Anywhere allows the same code to be used across device types, code can be more modular, new devices get to market faster and data can be shared readily with other systems. By choosing open source Java, you get the added benefits of complete transparency in the code base, well-understood redistribution licensing and more flexibility on upgrade timing.
RTECC is this week in Santa Clara (just down the street from us) and Java on embedded devices will once again be a hot topic. If you plan to be there, stop by Booth 210 to meet our Zulu (OpenJDK) team. They can answer your questions about using OpenJDK for your embedded projects.
If you’re considering using Java for your project or looking for a Java build that better meets your needs, Azul CTO Gil Tene is giving a presentation discussing the different proprietary and open source Java options for embedded at 5PM in room 201. You might be surprised how many options you have, including some new options for fully customizable open source Java builds.
As more embedded devices use Java, we’ll likely need a few more developers, though. TheServerSide noted in 2012 that predictions are for some 97 billion more embedded applications to be created in the next few years, (yes, that’s Billion with a ‘B’). Over 10,000 applications per Java developer. Better get busy!