Ideaworks Labs has officially released Airplay SDK 4.4, the company's proprietary development toolset designed for developers who want to work within a single code base and then deploy natively to multiple mobile platforms and devices. New to this release is the Extensions Development Kit (EDK), an extension tool built as an endeavor to widen Airplay's multi-platform APIs to access any OS-specific APIs and third-party libraries they choose.
Initially implemented on iOS and Android, Airplay EDK is intended to provide developers with both a consistent multi-platform OS abstraction, together with the ability to access OS-specific functionality if desired. The company says that EDK support for Airplay's other target platforms will follow in future releases.
"With the addition of the Extensions Development Kit, Airplay SDK has strengthened its position as the most efficient, powerful, and flexible platform for simultaneous development of rich apps and games across iOS, Android and other smartphone and tablet platforms. We're excited to work with the Airplay developer community to use the EDK in building a rich ecosystem of extension APIs and integrations with third-party services," said Tim Closs, CTO, Ideaworks Labs.
Ideaworks clearly has high hopes for developer adoption and is emphasizing Airplay EDK's option to allow developers to design their own extension APIs and implement them on the selected OS target platforms using the native OS SDKs. The implementations become standard OS libraries that are then linked into the Airplay app at the point of deployment. These extensions can be used to access OS-specific APIs or to integrate third-party services that are available only as static libraries.
"In addition, Airplay SDK 4.4 supports multi-threading, allowing developers to exploit emerging dual-core platforms and providing ease and simplicity in implementing background tasks such as file loading and network activity. Multi-threading is implemented initially on iOS and Android," added Closs.
The release also extends Airplay SDK to new genres of apps including augmented reality and photography, with three new camera and imaging APIs:
- Snapshot -- Developers can take a picture using the OS camera app, and return the image to the app or the device image store.
- Image stream -- Developers can stream the camera image to the device display, and draw over it.
- Image load/save -- Using the OS image store app, developers can either load an image from, or save an image to, the device's image store.