Mobile E-Commerce Platforms

Mobile devices use many different platforms or operating system to run applications and system software.  Mobile payments run on these platforms using APIs (application programming interface) which is the way the applications interact with the operating system to use the hardware on a given device.  Security  for mobile payments on smartphones and cellphones necessitates understanding of the different types of platforms installed on mobile devices.  According to Krutz and Nahari (2011) the following are some examples of common platforms also called “stacks.”

Java Micro Edition:  Different Java editions can be used depending on processing power and hardware characteristics.  Java editions include Embedded Java, Java Card, Java Micro Edition, Java Standard Edition, and Java Enterprise Edition.  Java Micro Edition is the most common amongst mobile devices.  Java uses an object-oriented language that can be secure, extensible and cross-platform (Krutz and Nahari 2011).

Android:  Created by Google.  Android is an open source platform based on the Linux kernel.  The Open Handset Alliance (OHA) was created and led by Google to define Android APIs, its programming model, and the ecosystem supporting it (Krutz and Nahari, 2011).

BlackBerry OS: Product of Research In Motion (RIM).  The BlackBerry OS is proprietary and only exists on RIM devices, BlackBerries, and is considered a closed source platform as opposed to Android’s open source.

iOS: iOS is a mobile version of Mac OS X adapted for mobile devices.  Mac OS X and iOS is based on Apple’s open source operating system known as Darwin OS.

Windows: Windows Mobile operating system based on Microsoft’s Windows operating system.


Krutz, R and Nahari, H. 2011. Web commerce security design and development. Wiley Publishing Inc. Indianapolis, IN.