Oracle also announced the availability of JDK 8, a production-ready implementation of the Java SE 8 Platform Specification, which was recently approved through the Java Community Process (JCP). This release includes the largest upgrade to the Java programming model since the platform was introduced in 1996. JDK 8 was developed collaboratively in the OpenJDK Community.
The Java SE 8 release is the result of industry-wide development involving open review, weekly builds and extensive collaboration between Oracle engineers and members of the worldwide Java developer community via the OpenJDK Community and the JCP.
Java SE 8 enables enhanced developer productivity and significant application performance increases through reduced boilerplate code, improved collections and annotations, simpler parallel programming models and more efficient use of modern, multi-core processors.
Oracle JDK 8 has already achieved world record performance for 4 socket systems on NEC Intel-based servers and for 2 socket systems on Oracle SPARC T5 servers, with a performance improvement of 12 to 41% compared to JDK 7 on the same Oracle configuration (NEC benchmark details, Oracle benchmark details).
New client Java features and enhancements are also available as part of the latest JavaFX release within JDK 8. These include: an embedded specific graphics stack, new UI controls, a Modena theme, functionality to enable developers to embed Swing content into JavaFX applications, new 3D graphics features and additional HTML 5 support.
Backward compatibility of Java SE 8 with previous versions of the platform preserves the skill sets of current Java software developers and helps to protect Java technology investments.
Developers interested in getting started immediately with the Java SE 8 release can download the NetBeans Integrated Development Environment (IDE) 8.0, which will allow them take advantage of the latest Java features, as well as enhanced support for HTML5.
The Eclipse team has been working on Java SE 8 support for almost 2 years and is on schedule to have an update release coinciding with the Java SE 8 launch as a feature patch for the current Kepler SR2. The team has announced that Eclipse will also include support for Java SE 8 in the upcoming “Luna” release scheduled for June 2014.
An updated Java SE 8 training curriculum will be available soon from Oracle to help developers transition to Java SE 8 and implement the latest platform enhancements.
Oracle Java SE Embedded
Oracle Java SE Embedded 8 provides a development platform for embedded devices and the Internet of Things (IoT) that includes the flexibility, portability and features of Java SE 8.
Oracle Java SE Embedded 8 allows developers to leverage the three new Compact Profiles in Java SE 8, which are predefined subsets of the full Java SE 8 API specification and allow for creation of smaller platforms for embedded devices. With this release, Java SE can now be deployed on embedded devices based using as little as 10 MB static footprint and 16 MB of RAM, 2-3 times smaller than Oracle Java SE Embedded 7.
Oracle Java SE Embedded 8 is available for many configurations including Linux on ARM architecture, x86 and PPC, and is optimized for popular community boards such as the Raspberry Pi; as well as commercial Systems-on-Chip (SoC), such as the Freescale i.MX 6 Series.
Java SE Embedded tools are also available to create customized, space-optimized JREs for embedded platforms.
Java ME 8
Java ME 8 is a major update to the existing Java ME platform incorporating a large set of updated and new features, including: Java language and API alignment with Java SE 8, support for modern web protocols, a comprehensive application model, advanced security features and standard APIs for power management and interaction with a broad set of standard peripherals.
The significant enhancements in Java ME 8 are designed to deliver faster application performance, which is especially important on less powerful devices.
With this release, Java ME and Java SE are converging, enabling a more consistent developer experience and more code re-use across the platforms.
The new Java language enhancements in Java ME 8 leverage recent Java SE features to allow developers to write cleaner, more efficient code that can be deployed across both platforms and the new embedded-specific capabilities of Java ME 8 can help to further shorten and simplify development cycles.
Oracle Java ME Embedded 8 will be the Oracle implementation of the Java ME 8 standard. Oracle Java ME Embedded 8 Early Access 2 is now available as a binary runtime for Qualcomm 6270T (ARM9-based) Development Platform, Raspberry Pi (ARM11-based) and ST Microelectronics STM32F4DISCOVERY (based on the ARM Cortex-M4 processor).
Java ME SDK 8 Early Access 2 is now available to support development of Java ME 8 Early Access-based applications on an emulation runtime for Windows 7, as well supported hardware platforms.