Sencha expands HTML5 app dev tools

Sencha Complete Team bundles existing tools with an Eclipse plug-in, a desktop application packager, and data connectors

HTML5 tools vendor Sencha unveiled today Sencha Complete Team, which bundles existing tools with an Eclipse plug-in, a desktop application packager, and data connectors.

Developers using the suite can build HTML5-based business applications for mobile and desktop environments. Sencha says developers can build applications using Web technologies and a single code base, then package them to run on multiple devices, including Apple's iPhone and iPad, Google Android devices, and OS X and Windows PCs.

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The suite features Sencha's existing Ext JS JavaScript framework and the Sencha Touch mobile Web application framework, along with the Sencha Architect visual development tool for HTML5. The Sencha Eclipse Plug-in for Ext JS is intended to improve Ext JS developer productivity through such features as code completion and error correction, as well as support for team collaboration. "The Eclipse support in particular is likely to be popular, as it is the default development environment for a large number of enterprises worldwide," said Stephen O'Grady, an analyst at RedMonk. "The connectors are also likely to be very useful for composing services-enabled applications quickly."

Sencha Desktop Packager, based on Google's Chromium open source desktop browser technology, lets applications be packaged in a runtime with native API access and the performance of full desktop applications. "What Desktop Packager allows you to do is ... basically do an end run around the enterprise browser by deploying as a native application," said Sencha CEO Michael Mullany. That means corporate developers are not held back by limitations of their companies' standard browser. The desktop packager complements Sencha Mobile Packager, for running Web applications as native iOS or Android applications. The mobile packager is part of Sencha Complete Team as well.

Data connectors for SOAP and AMF (Action Message Format) enable connectivity to data sources when building JavaScript applications. Developers can use these connectors instead of hand-writing XML parsing code or binary data transformations.

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