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Mobile Web Browser Extensions: Utilizing local device functionality in mobile web applications
KTH, School of Information and Communication Technology (ICT), Communication Systems, CoS. (CCSlab)
2008 (English)Independent thesis Advanced level (degree of Master (Two Years)), 20 credits / 30 HE creditsStudent thesis
Abstract [en]

Mobile web browsers of today have many of the same capabilities as their desktop counterparts. However, among the capabilities they lack is a way for web applications to interact with local devices. While today’s mobile phones commonly include GPS receivers and digital cameras, these local devices are currently not accessible from within the browser. The only means of utilizing these devices is by using standalone applications, but such applications lack the versatility of web browsers. If a mobile browser could utilize these local devices, then a mobile application could run within the browser, thus avoiding the need for specialized client software.

This thesis suggests an approach for adding such capabilities to mobile browsers. In the proposed method, scripted access to local device functionality is facilitated by a local Java application. This application acts as a proxy server and allows the browser to call methods exposed by the local Java APIs. Both the benefits and some security concerns of this approach are examined. The benefits are further highlighted through two example web applications which utilize local devices.

Abstract [sv]

I dagens mobila webbläsare återfinns det mesta av funktionaliteten från webbläsare för datorer. Det som dock fortfarande saknas är möjligheten för webbapplikationer att komma åt lokala telefonfunktioner. Dagens mobiltelefoner är ofta utrustade med GPS-mottagare och digitalkameror, men dessa kan för närvarande ej nås från webbläsaren. Det enda sättet att utnyttja dessa inbyggda funktioner är genom separata applikationer, men sådana applikationer är inte lika mångsidiga som webbläsare. Om en mobil webbläsare kunde utnyttja de inbyggda funktionerna, så skulle en mobil applikation kunna köras i webbläsaren istället för att ha separat klientprogramvara.

Det här examensarbetet föreslår ett sätt att ge denna möjlighet till mobila webbläsare. I den föreslagna metoden används en lokal Java-applikation för att ge tillgång till inbyggda funktioner via skript. Denna applikation fungerar som en proxy-server och låter webbläsaren anropa metoder exponerade av lokala Java-API. Både fördelar och några säkerhetsproblem med den här lösningen undersöks. Fördelarna visas ytterligare genom två exempel på webbapplikationer som utnyttjar inbyggda telefonfunktioner.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
2008. , 54 p.
Series
Trita-ICT-COS, ISSN 1653-6347 ; COS/CCS 2008-07
Keyword [en]
Web Applications, Mobile Browsers, MIDlets, Proxy
National Category
Communication Systems
Identifiers
URN: urn:nbn:se:kth:diva-91862OAI: oai:DiVA.org:kth-91862DiVA: diva2:511443
Subject / course
Computer Communication
Educational program
Master of Science in Engineering - Computer Science and Technology
Presentation
2008-04-03, Seminar room Grimeton, Isafjordsgatan 22, Kista, 13:00 (English)
Uppsok
Technology
Supervisors
Examiners
Available from: 2012-03-23 Created: 2012-03-21 Last updated: 2013-09-09Bibliographically approved

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