Nokia Asha platform overview

The Nokia Asha software platform is designed specifically to power a range of affordable yet powerful smartphones. It’s a direct descendant of the Series 40 platform. So, if you’ve delivered Java or web apps to Series 40, you’ll be instantly at home with the Nokia Asha software platform.

Better still the Nokia Asha software platform will take your apps into the future, with a platform that’ll advanced with the increasing expectation of consumers worldwide.

Key feature of the Nokia Asha software platform

The key features of the platform are:

  • Platformised in software and hardware — complementing the Nokia Asha software platform is an increased focus on platformising the phone hardware, developers will now have greater certainty that a hardware feature they want to exploit in an app will be available across the new Nokia Asha family.
  • Firmware updating — smartphone users expect regular firmware update to bring new features and functions to their phones, the Nokia Asha platform has been built with this demand in mind. Users of Nokia Asha 501 phones will be able to update their firmware to Nokia Asha software platform 1.1 and updates are already in development.
  • User experience — an engaging, sophisticated UI, optimised for 3” QVGA displays. The UI employs a swiping style for navigation between apps and the home screen, and within the home screen. It also enables apps to use the whole screen by hiding the status and menu bars until they are swiped into view.
  • Advanced apps — create more advanced, fully featured apps more easily with Java. Harness features such as 2D and 3D graphic, accelerometers, and location information, among others. Using the Nokia Notifications API you can also push information to your Java apps in real-time. The Share API adds the ability to interact and share information with social media sites, and the VoIP API enables apps to make internet calls over WLAN. Building your apps with Java gives you more options to deliver the quality of apps consumers expect on a smartphone.
  • Connected apps — with web apps online content is delivered using up to 90% less data, while offering users an interactive and engaging UI. This is because, unlike other proxy browser systems, Nokia Asha web apps can update their UI locally on the phone.
  • Better support for social apps — in both Java and web apps, with Nokia Notification functionality provided on the platform and within the development tools.
  • Better support for multimedia apps, with support for audio mixing and QVGA and VGA image size.

Create great apps with Java or web apps technology

The Nokia Asha software platform offers you the choice of two industry standard development options: Java ME and web technology. Java ME is ideal for apps and games where rich functionality and high performance are needed, while web technology can be used to deliver on-line content in an engaging, data efficient way.

Java highlights

  • Starting from Asha Software Platform 1.0 the recommended maximum JAR file size is 5MB and the recommended maximum heap memory consumption is 3MB
  • New Asha UI for fast, intuitive interaction
  • Mobile Internationalization API (JSR-238) and new Nokia specific APIs for features such as image scaling and network state
  • Push messages to your apps in real-time with the Nokia Notifications API
  • The Share API provides a convenient overlay to JSR-211 for simple social sharing of content
  • The VoIP API provides the opportunity to integrate powerful internet telephone features into Nokia Asha apps
  • Tools, with updated emulator, sensor and location simulators, and WiFi based on-device debugger
  • Comprehensive documentation, training, code examples and more
  • Uses Oracle VM
  • Users Nokia IDE for Java ME 3.1

Web app highlights

  • Powered by the latest Gecko rendering engine
  • Rich UIs with dynamic list and fixed and scrollable regions
  • Support for Nokia Notifications
  • API to build hardware back-button navigation into your app
  • Ability to capture photos and videos
  • Discovery through the Nokia Store
  • Earn from your apps with paid downloads and in-app advertising.
  • Tools with updated simulator, including a new feature to control image quality in the same way it is on a phone
  • Comprehensive documentation, training, code examples and more

Learn more about developing with Java ME

Learn more about developing with web technology

Java APIs supported in Nokia Asha software platform 1.4

Nokia APIs and plug-ins

  • Share API
  • VoIP API
  • Tantalum plug-in
  • LWUIT plug-in
  • Nokia Gesture API
  • Nokia Frame Animator API
  • Nokia Notifications API
  • File Selection API
  • Image Scaling API
  • Network State API
  • Contact API
  • Phone Settings API
  • Nokia UI API
  • Webview API
  • Theme API
  • Nokia In-App payment plug-in


  • JSR 172 (Web Services)
  • JSR 177 (Security and Trust)
  • JSR 179 (Location)
  • JSR 211 (Content Handler)
  • JSR 234 (Multimedia Supplements)
  • JSR 256 (Mobile Sensor API)
  • JSR-238 (Mobile Internationalization)

MSA subset

  • JSR 75 (File and PIM)
  • JSR 82 (Bluetooth)
  • JSR 118 (MIDP 2.1)
  • JSR 135 (Mobile Media)
  • JSR 139 (CLDC 1.1)
  • JSR 184 (3D Graphics)
  • JSR 205 (Messaging)
  • JSR 226 (Vector Graphics)