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Sun open-sources mobile Java UI toolkit

The company releases the code for its lightweight user interface toolkit under a modified GPLv2 license, in what it says was response to developer demand.

Sun has open-sourced its toolkit for creating Java-based user interfaces for mobile phones.

Sun Microsystems

The source code for the lightweight UI toolkit was released Thursday under the "GPLv2 with Classpath Exception" license. The toolkit includes a full set of "ready-made graphical components," along with support for fonts, themes, animation, and transition effects, Sun said in the accompanying statement.

"By creating LWUIT, Sun is reaffirming its commitment to the mobile development community and by open-sourcing the LWUIT code, we are enabling mobile developers to quickly and easily create rich, portable interfaces for their applications--functionality that they have been requesting for some time," Craig Gering, the company's senior director of embedded Java software, said in the statement.

Gering added that developers would be able to use the toolkit to "create a single interface that will work anywhere Java is found."

Sun's open-sourcing of the toolkit is just the latest development in the fast-moving mobile open-source scene. Earlier in August, Movial joined the LiMo Foundation, bringing with it a toolkit for creating browser-based mobile user interfaces. Meanwhile, Symbian is going open-source, and Google's Android platform--which is effectively Java-based--could still appear as soon as this year.

David Meyer of ZDNet UK reported from London.