Java Platform, Micro Edition, or Java ME, is a Java platform designed for embedded systems (mobile devices are one kind of such systems) . Target devices range from industrial controls to mobile phones (especially feature phones) and set-top boxes. Java ME was formerly known as Java 2 Platform, Micro Edition (J2ME).
Java ME was designed by Sun Microsystems, now a subsidiary of Oracle Corporation; the platform replaced a similar technology, PersonalJava. Originally developed under the Java Community Process as JSR 68, the different flavors of Java ME have evolved in separate JSRs. Sun provides a reference implementation of the specification, but has tended not to provide free binary implementations of its Java ME runtime environment for mobile devices, rather relying on third parties to provide their own.
As of 22 December 2006, the Java ME source code is licensed under the GNU General Public License, and is released under the project name phoneME.
As of 2008, all Java ME platforms are currently restricted to JRE 1.3 features and use that version of the class file format (internally known as version 47.0). Should Oracle ever declare a new round of Java ME configuration versions that support the later class file formats and language features, such as those corresponding JRE 1.5 or 1.6 (notably, generics), it will entail extra work on the part of all platform vendors to update their JREs.
Java ME devices implement a profile. The most common of these are the Mobile Information Device Profile aimed at mobile devices, such as cell phones, and the Personal Profile aimed at consumer products and embedded devices like set-top boxes and PDAs. Profiles are subsets of configurations, of which there are currently two: the Connected Limited Device Configuration (CLDC) and the Connected Device Configuration (CDC).
There are more than 2.1 billion Java ME enabled mobile phones and PDAs, but it is becoming old technology as it is not used on any of today's newest mobile platforms (eg iPhone, Android, Windows Phone 7, MeeGo, BlackBerry's new QNX).
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