Some developers have already let us know that their apps are available for BlackBerry 6 including S4BB. It’s good to know that when you get your first BlackBerry Torch, there are developers out there who want to be catering to the early adopters. To help push more development for the device, RIM has made the BlackBerry Java SDK v6.0 available along with device simulators.
The BlackBerry Java SDK v6.0 takes advantage of new UI features, offers deeper integration with BlackBerrys, access to new and enhanced services and support for rendering and porting content to the new WebKit-based browser. BlackBerry 6 offers more than 40 new APIs that allow developers to build even better apps for the Torch. The press release outlines some new BlackBerry 6 features and details about how the SDK supports them:
Richer User Interfaces
The BlackBerry Java SDK v6.0 supports the fresh new look in the BlackBerry 6 user interface (UI) with new pre-built UI elements including contextual menus, tables, lists, inertial scrolling, activity progress indicators, pane managers, tool bars, title bars and sub menus.
BlackBerry Browser with WebKit
The new browser in BlackBerry 6 leverages a WebKit rendering engine and developers will be able to build dynamic web sites and rich mobile applications as well as advanced widgets that can be seamlessly integrated with the browser and core native applications. BlackBerry Widgets and web applications designed for the BlackBerry Browser v 5.0 will be forward compatible to the new browser.
With the added support of HTML5 in the new BlackBerry 6 Browser, web developers will be able to create content for BlackBerry smartphones that is run through the web, including compelling games and interactive media with 3D graphics in real time and more.
Native Feature Integration
Developers can use new APIs to more deeply integrate their applications with various aspects of a BlackBerry smartphone’s core functionality. The Unified Search Framework API will allow developers to register their application and their content partners to be searchable, as well as provide a mechanism for in-app search. The Mapfield API has been redesigned to provide enhanced features including panning, zooming, my location and convenience toolbars. Developers can call the Mapfield API to customize the look of location data and can use multiple mapfields simultaneously on the same screen for added user benefits.
Location Service Enhancements
The Location Service has been enhanced with a WiFi Geolocation API, allowing developers to build applications that leverage a handset’s location based on its proximity to WiFi networks. The API builds on the LBS features already available to developers through cell tower location and GPS. Reverse Geocoding now allows applications to leverage zip/postal codes to obtain local information. The Travel Time API brings estimated time of arrival (ETA) information into applications. The ETA is based on anonymous real-time crowd sourced data combined with historical traffic information.
Also, be sure to download the BlackBerry Torch simulators from BlackBerry.com.