Palm pushes WebOS plug-in kit

The smartphone maker's WebOS Plug-in Development Kit enters its public beta phase, and Palm shows off some games built by PDK developers.

Lance Whitney Contributing Writer
Lance Whitney is a freelance technology writer and trainer and a former IT professional. He's written for Time, CNET, PCMag, and several other publications. He's the author of two tech books--one on Windows and another on LinkedIn.
Lance Whitney
2 min read

Palm is hoping its new developer's kit can lead to better games and richer apps for its smartphone users.


Palm announced on Tuesday that a public beta version of its new WebOS Plug-in Development Kit (PDK) is ready for developers to download via the company's Developer Center Web site. The PDK lets programmers create plug-ins using C or C++ to enhance existing WebOS applications.

The WebOS is the software platform for Palm's Pre and Pixi smartphones.

Unveiled at this week's Game Developers Conference (GDC) in San Francisco, the PDK is being targeted to designers who want to create new games for the WebOS or port over existing games developed on other platforms. The PDK will offer rich, high-performance 3D graphics, ideal for more immersive games, according to Palm.

At the Consumer Electronics Show in January, Palm demoed a few games built using a prerelease version of the PDK. Those included such titles as Monopoly, Need for Speed: Undercover, Scrabble, Sudoku, and The Sims. This week, the company is taking advantage of its booth at GDC to show off newer games built by PDK developers. A few of the titles on display now include Assassin's Creed, Guitar Hero 5 Mobile, Real Soccer 2010, Real Tennis, and Giant Fighting Robots.

"We have both the developer tools and the hardware necessary for a world-class gaming experience, and an impressive portfolio of WebOS game titles from top-notch developers to show for it," said Katie Mitic, senior vice president of Palm's product marketing, in a statement.

Though developers can download and start working with the beta of the PDK, distributing those games will require new functionality built into an upcoming update for WebOS, said Palm. The PDK is due to exit beta status and launch as a final release sometime in the first half of the year.