Oracle announced its Application Development Framework MobileClient, which it says “allows developers to extend their existing skills into mobile devices.” The company is targeting vertical markets such as field services, warehouse management, consumer goods/retail execution and sales force automation – current platform support is BlackBerry and Windows Mobile, rather than the more consumer-friendly OSs. Oracle said that the tools simplify app creation and deployment using a single, standard Java user interface framework and tooling for all supported devices, and as support for additional handsets is added, apps can be deployed without redevelopment.

According to the company, Oracle ADF Mobile Client offers a “highly productive, declarative development environment,” where a developer can work with a mix of visual editing tools and Java code to define a device-independent representation of the application. This is then rendered on multiple device types using the native UI for that platform. The approach removes the need for developers to “overly specialise on a particular class of device or toolkit,” and allows the app to rapidly respond to the changing capabilities and platforms within the mobile industry.

Features supported by Oracle ADF Mobile Client include local data caching, to provide support for hybrid online/offline mobile applications; local device hardware access, enabling apps to access cameras, GPS, barcode readers and other data sources; and a “highly configurable” data synchronisation engine to manage  connectivity with enterprise systems.

Oracle ADF Mobile Client complements the Oracle ADF Mobile Browser, a product which enables developers to build connected enterprise apps for a broad range of mobile browsers.