JUniversal
JUniversal

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PhoneGap
PhoneGap

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JUniversal vs PhoneGap: What are the differences?

JUniversal: A new, Java-based approach to cross-platform mobile apps (used by Google Inbox and Google Spreadsheets). The vision of JUniversal came from some guys at Nokia who possess considerable expertise both in Java and in building cross-platform apps. They built this tool to provide an elegant way to translate source code and make it useful across multiple platforms. JUniversal offers you the freedom to write your shared code in Java and then translate it to C# (available now) or to C++/Objective C++ (coming soon). You can also combine JUniversal with Google’s j2objc translator to translate Java to Objective-C for iOS; PhoneGap: Easilily create mobile apps using HTML, CSS, and JavaScript. PhoneGap is a web platform that exposes native mobile device apis and data to JavaScript. PhoneGap is a distribution of Apache Cordova. PhoneGap allows you to use standard web technologies such as HTML5, CSS3, and JavaScript for cross-platform development, avoiding each mobile platforms' native development language. Applications execute within wrappers targeted to each platform, and rely on standards-compliant API bindings to access each device's sensors, data, and network status.

JUniversal and PhoneGap belong to "Cross-Platform Mobile Development" category of the tech stack.

Some of the features offered by JUniversal are:

  • OAuth (based on Scribe)
  • JSON
  • Unit testing (JUnit)

On the other hand, PhoneGap provides the following key features:

  • Android
  • Blackberry
  • iOS

JUniversal and PhoneGap are both open source tools. It seems that PhoneGap with 4.15K GitHub stars and 974 forks on GitHub has more adoption than JUniversal with 132 GitHub stars and 22 GitHub forks.

What is JUniversal?

The vision of JUniversal came from some guys at Nokia who possess considerable expertise both in Java and in building cross-platform apps. They built this tool to provide an elegant way to translate source code and make it useful across multiple platforms. JUniversal offers you the freedom to write your shared code in Java and then translate it to C# (available now) or to C++/Objective C++ (coming soon). You can also combine JUniversal with Google’s j2objc translator to translate Java to Objective-C for iOS.

What is PhoneGap?

PhoneGap is a web platform that exposes native mobile device apis and data to JavaScript. PhoneGap is a distribution of Apache Cordova. PhoneGap allows you to use standard web technologies such as HTML5, CSS3, and JavaScript for cross-platform development, avoiding each mobile platforms' native development language. Applications execute within wrappers targeted to each platform, and rely on standards-compliant API bindings to access each device's sensors, data, and network status.

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      What are some alternatives to JUniversal and PhoneGap?
      React Native
      React Native enables you to build world-class application experiences on native platforms using a consistent developer experience based on JavaScript and React. The focus of React Native is on developer efficiency across all the platforms you care about - learn once, write anywhere. Facebook uses React Native in multiple production apps and will continue investing in React Native.
      Ionic
      Free and open source, Ionic offers a library of mobile and desktop-optimized HTML, CSS and JS components for building highly interactive apps. Use with Angular, React, Vue, or plain JavaScript.
      Xamarin
      Xamarin’s Mono-based products enable .NET developers to use their existing code, libraries and tools (including Visual Studio*), as well as skills in .NET and the C# programming language, to create mobile applications for the industry’s most widely-used mobile devices, including Android-based smartphones and tablets, iPhone, iPad and iPod Touch.
      Apache Cordova
      Apache Cordova is a set of device APIs that allow a mobile app developer to access native device function such as the camera or accelerometer from JavaScript. Combined with a UI framework such as jQuery Mobile or Dojo Mobile or Sencha Touch, this allows a smartphone app to be developed with just HTML, CSS, and JavaScript.
      Flutter
      Flutter is a mobile app SDK to help developers and designers build modern mobile apps for iOS and Android.
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      Decisions about JUniversal and PhoneGap
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      Reviews of JUniversal and PhoneGap
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      How developers use JUniversal and PhoneGap
      Avatar of Google
      Google uses JUniversalJUniversal

      Comment from HackerNews (https://news.ycombinator.com/item?id=8998736)

      This is how Google Inbox and Google Spreadsheets works. See the slides from my recently produced GWT Create Session (http://t.co/ZvoaHxCoZT). J2ObjC slide deck here (https://docs.google.com/presentation/d/1mW_Plm5jAygELf7qjVK7...) Videos of the conference will be online soon.

      Prior to that, some 20% Googlers also produced the PlayN library (https://github.com/threerings/playn) This was taken over by Michael Bayne who added an iOS backend by Bytecode -> IKVM -> Mono conversion. I beleive j2objc and RoboVM backends exist now as well.

      The major benefit of the j2objc approach is the avoidance of GC in favor of ARC, the conversion of message-sends into C-method calls when possible, and integration with existing iOS toolchain.

      When we started, it seemed like an iffy idea, but after developing a product delivered to millions of users on a high volume site (gmail) that has 70% code sharing, and being able to simultaneously develop, test, and deploy across the platforms reasonably efficiently, a lot of skeptics have become converts to the concept.

      Avatar of Trading Log
      Trading Log uses PhoneGapPhoneGap

      We used phonegap best practices to compile and deploy our hybrid to android and ios markets.

      Avatar of William Baker
      William Baker uses PhoneGapPhoneGap

      To release the JavaScript game Whack-A-Mol http://www.ethertear.com/apps.html

      Avatar of Smileupps
      Smileupps uses PhoneGapPhoneGap

      to let web apps benefit of native device features

      Avatar of Eyal El.
      Eyal El. uses PhoneGapPhoneGap

      Our Apps are wrapped with PhoneGap 7 & 8

      How much does JUniversal cost?
      How much does PhoneGap cost?
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