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Microsoft Releases SignalR SDK for Android, Java

SignalR provides real-time communications between servers and clients.

SignalR is a popular ASP.NET library for server-client communications. .NET developers use it often for apps that need frequent server updates; chat is the classic example. Now, SignalR has been made available to Android and Java developers via an SDK from Microsoft Open Technologies.

A blog posting from Microsoft's Olivier Bloch announced the SDK, which is available through the GitHub source repository. "As a result, Android and Java Web application developers can now build Android applications like JaBBR, a simple chat application, or Java desktop applications like this sample stock ticker application, with an ASP.Net back end," Bloch wrote. SignalR provides real-time Web functionality, which has always been difficult with traditional development tools.

SignalR also supports WebSockets, and is backwards-compatible for older browsers (it uses older transports where necessary, i.e. for browsers that don't support HTML5). It has APIs for connection management like connect and disconnect events, grouping connections and authorization. Microsoft's SignalR documentation notes that  "Any time a user refreshes a web page to see new data, or the page implements long polling to retrieve new data, it is a candidate for using SignalR. Examples include dashboards and monitoring applications, collaborative applications (such as simultaneous editing of documents), job progress updates, and real-time forms."

Various tutorials on building apps with SignalR are available on Visual Studio Magazine, including a two-part series on building Web apps, and using SignalR in an iOS app.

Microsoft Open Technologies is a Microsoft subsidiary that specializes in interoperability with other platforms by open sourcing Microsoft technologies. It was unveiled in 2012.

About the Author

Keith Ward is the editor in chief of Virtualization & Cloud Review. Follow him on Twitter @VirtReviewKeith.

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