Sony Ericsson adds WebGL support for Android web browser to Xperia handsets

First devices to support 3D graphics tech

Sony Ericsson adds WebGL support for Android web browser to Xperia handsets
More than eight months since the final specification of the tech was released, Sony Ericsson has announced it is the first manufacturer to add support for WebGL to its Android browser.

The web-based technology, which extends JavaScript's capability to allow it to generate interactive 3D graphics in-browser, is seen by many as an extension of HTML5's efforts to rival native apps.

Support has been added to the firm's Xperia range via a software update, allowing web apps to target the firm's Android devices.

WebGL wonders

WebGL's strength, according to Sony Ericsson's Anders Isberg, is its ability to deliver 3D rendering without the addition of plug-ins, meaning consumers with compatible devices can access WebGL-generated content without having to jump through any hoops.

"Most of the existing WebGL applications available on the web are tailored for a desktop environment," noted Isberg.

"Consequently, those applications are making use of the W3C DOM Mouse and Keyboard events to navigate and control the WebGL application. However, on a mobile device, the touch events must be used to navigate and control the 3D scene."

Isberg added WebGL requires devices with a bit of meat behind them – Sony Ericsson's Xperia Play, arc, neo and pro equipped with a 1GHz Snapdragon processor and an Adreno 205 GPU – to run successfully, but Sony Ericsson has materials to help developers get acclimatised with the language.

[source: Sony Ericsson]

With a fine eye for detail, Keith Andrew is fuelled by strong coffee, Kylie Minogue and the shapely curve of a san serif font.