If you’re a Toshiba VM4050 owner, you’ve probably noticed the lack of downloads that many SonyEricsson T608 owners have been feeling for awhile. No MobiTV, no 1KTV, no RealOne, and the lack of games have you putting that high-resolution screen down more than you’d like. And while a bad Java implementation can be blamed for the T608, the VM4050 has a much deeper rooted problem.
Almost every Vision phone to this point (in fact, every non-PDA Vision phone) has used an ARM7 processor. The ARM7 was powerful for its time, and has had its clock speed continually cranked higher to eek out faster browsing and faster Java. But the folks at Toshiba saw MIDP 2.0 on the horizon, and decided that a phone with the functionality of the VM4050 should not be hindered by such a slow processor, so they changed to the ARM926EJ-S processor, quite a mouthful more than the ARM7, but equally more powerful.
The problem is that content creators had enough problems in adapting their programs to work with several phones with the same processor, much less two different processors. While the VM4050 uses the Sun JVM for MIDP 1.0.3, the processor difference alone will scare away even the greediest charges-every-month-automatically developer.
The good news is that this change was going to happen sooner (with the VM4050) or later (with MIDP 2.0). Content developers will have to get used to a changing processor environment, unless phone manufacturers find common ground with a single processor (as they did with the ARM7). But for now, it looks like these developers are taking a wait-and-see approach with the VM4050, because the amount of resources to port something just for one phone could be too much if the demand is not there.