Yakov Fain blogged that Java on the client has no chance succeeding with the current complicated installation process. Unfortunately I agree. But, I also think there is even a bigger and very closely related problem, launching Java client applications. I blogged about it here. Launching Java applications on the client could be very challenging.
With JavaFX 2.0 undergoing dramatic changes (JavaFX script is dropped), we are going to start looking early next year how to update Exadel JavaFX Plug-in for Eclipse and Exadel Flamingo to work with new JavaFX. With JavaFX script being dropped, applications will be developed using Java API. I get a feeling that a few years ago it was popular to use declarative languages to create user interfaces and now we are going back to using Java. Maybe GWT has something to do with that. Two things must happen for JavaFX or Java on the client to succeed: easy virtual machine install and easy deployment. Even with major, and I believe positive changes in JavaFX 2.0, without the two things I mentioned above, it’s going to lose the battle against plug-in free browser applications.
I still find one thing very interesting. With JavaFX 1.x out for about three years during which it didn’t produce any real applications and JavaFX 2.0 is still in development (and with somewhat unclear future), you still get JavaFX presented at various conferences. Just last month at Devoxx, JavaFX was covered by 4-5 sessions. The community is strong. At the same time, you never hear HTML5 vs Java client, it’s always against Flash. So again, client Java is kind of there but also not there.