Network communication overview

A BlackBerry® device uses radio communication technologies such as Wi-Fi® technology, CDMA, or GPRS to communicate over wireless connections. BlackBerry devices work with different network transports over those radio technologies to connect to the Internet or a private network. Each transport offers different advantages. As a developer, you should choose the transport that is most appropriate for your requirements.

When you choose a transport for your application, you should consider a number of different factors, including:
  • Type of user
  • Importance of security and reliability
  • Networks that the application must use and support for roaming users
  • Amount of data that you expect to send and receive
  • Need to proactively push data for updates and alerts
  • Location of the destination server (Internet or intranet)

The BlackBerry® Java® SDK 6.0 includes three APIs that you can use to open a network connection.

API

Description

BlackBerry Device Software version

Communication API

The Communication API encapsulates all of the operations that are required to connect to an HTTP server that is located on the Internet or behind an organization's firewall.

6.0 and later

Network API

The Network API provides a simple interface to access many connection-related options and network transports.

5.0 and later

Generic Connection Framework

The GCF provides a flexible way to create network connections using the transport of your choice.

4.0 and later

In addition to the functionality that each API provides, you should consider whether the API exists in the version of the BlackBerry® Device Software that your target devices are likely to run. For example, the Communication API requires BlackBerry Device Software 6.0. You would need to write your own code to perform similar tasks on devices that run BlackBerry Device Software 5.0 and earlier.

The BlackBerry solution also enables server-side applications to proactively push data to BlackBerry devices in a highly secure and reliable manner.

Next topic: Communication API

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