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Sony Ericsson open sources its Android WebGL code

Sony Ericsson open sources its Android WebGL code
Sony Ericsson – soon to be just “Sony” – announced yesterday that they were releasing their home-brewed WebGL solution for Android 4.0 (Ice Cream Sandwich) to the open source community. With luck that should drive broader adoption of WebGL by Android devices, and perhaps even serve as a template for other mobile operating systems.

What is WebGL and why should you care? WebGL is an implementation of OpenGL, a programming language for real time 3D graphics. WebGL provides to tools to support advanced 3D models and shading in a web browser. It has already found widespread adoption on desktop browsers (read: everyone but Internet Explorer), but the spread of WebGL to mobile devices has lagged.

Sony itself brought the first WebGL-enabled Android devices to market last year with its Xperia line of smartphones. Nokia’s N900 is so far the lone accomplice in the mobile WebGL world, although the major update to RIM’s Playbook is expected to add WebGL support, and mobile Firefox is testing WebGL as well.

Given the importance of web apps to some mobile developers, the spread of WebGL to other smartphones should lead to a new array of browser-based games and apps that make use of advanced 3D graphics. And to that end, Sony Ericsson’s choice to publish their WebGL implementation to the open source community may benefit us all.

You can see a demo of WebGL graphics running in the browser of an Xperia arc S below:

source: Sony Ericsson via Android Authority

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