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Add Video Capture to Your BlackBerry Applications

  • December 9, 2009
  • By Chris King
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Until recently, a significant difference between the BlackBerry platform and its much-discussed competitors (Android, iPhone, and WebOS) was that BlackBerry did not support capturing video within programs. The recent release of BlackBerry OS version 5 remedies this problem with a well-established and proven interface. Now BlackBerry developers can impress their customers and peers by demonstrating that their little device can record video just as well as devices running on those other platforms that seem to be getting so much attention.

This article shows how with roughly a dozen lines of code you can upgrade your existing BlackBerry applications to add video support. Consider the following use case.

With the recent softness in the US housing market, people are increasingly interested in finding bargain properties to buy, or searching for a good apartment to rent. As anyone who has been through this process knows, it can be difficult to remember the details of potential homes by the end of the day, let alone after a month of searching. Wouldn't it be great if you could recall what each place looked like?

Well, you will make a BlackBerry app for that. This sample application will be called HomeHunter, and will present a simple interface that allows users to store each place they have visited, attach notes to each one, and, more impressively, insert a video as well.

What You Need
Eclipse 3.4 (Ganymede)
BlackBerry Plug-in for Eclipse
BlackBerry Device Simulators for 5.0
A BlackBerry device running OS version 5.0 or higher

Building the UI

To get started, you will write a simple application screen that allows the user to enter all relevant information about a location: address, date of visit, and any notes. You'll also put in some placeholders for starting and stopping a recording. Figure 1 shows what this early version of the application looks like.


Figure 1. HomeHunter Screen:
The basic screen shows all visual elements in place, right before adding video capture.

Tags: Java, video, Blackberry



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