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Hyperloop is Here

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Today, after three-odd years in the lab (including almost a year in public beta), we’re taking the wraps off Hyperloop. Wait–make that:


What is Hyperloop? We think of it as Titanium on rocket fuel.

Titanium, as many know, pioneered the ability to turn good old lovable JavaScript into binary, native apps that run on any major mobile platform, with no hybrid compromise. By providing a simple, yet powerful cross-platform API, Titanium lets you build multi-platform, native apps in a fraction of the time it would take to build for each platform separately.

But of course there are always some APIs that are distinct to the OS and not covered by the Titanium API set. To use these capabilities, you needed to build custom Titanium modules in the native OS language. (We provide some of these modules; our Marketplace provides lots of others from community members.)

With Hyperloop, the need for OS-specific modules disappears. That’s right: Hyperloop lets you access every single native API on iOS and Android, all via JavaScript. What happens as the platform vendors release new versions and APIs? Those too are instantly available via Hyperloop. This means you get all the extraordinary cross-platform power of Titanium, plus the ability to access any specific native API just as if you were building through the native SDKs—and to do it all in a language you know and love: JavaScript.

Hyperloop comes with our Pro, Team bundle, and Enterprise plans. (These kinds of innovations aren’t possible without lots of hard work and R&D investment.) Speaking of which, I want to thank all our teams who’ve made Hyperloop possible. I want also to recognize a few key members of our dev community, whose active engagement across GitHub and Jira contributed mightily to Hyperloop’s final push. These folks are Michael Gangolf, Pier Paolo Ramon, and Brian Garcia– our thanks to each of you!

Added to our recent announcements of App Designer and App Preview, Hyperloop crowns what has been a terrific summer of innovation. We’re excited to see the kinds of innovations these products unleash across our customers and users. (For installation instructions and other details on the 5.4.0 GA release, see the release notes.)

Oh, and yes: we’ve got even more cool stuff in store…


Will classic Titanium modules continue to be supported?
Yes, existing Titanium modules (built with Java for Android and Objective-C for iOS) will still be supported by the SDK.

What is Hyperloop’s relationship with Swift?
Prior to Hyperloop, the only way to develop native iOS modules for Titanium was to use Objective-C. But with the release of Hyperloop, we not only support full, native access to the platform SDK from JavaScript, you can also mix Swift (as well as Objective-C) classes in your apps, allowing you to directly access them from JavaScript.

Titanium works for Windows. Does Hyperloop?
We are planning Windows support in the future, but currently Hyperloop supports iOS and Android only.

Is Hyperloop available as part of the Platform trial?
Yes, you have full access to Hyperloop in trial. However, use of Hyperloop beyond trial requires a Pro plan or above.

If I build an app using Hyperloop, what happens if I later downgrade to the Indie plan?
If you downgrade your plan or if your plan expires, your production apps will continue to function but you will not be able to make Hyperloop-related changes without a plan that supports Hyperloop.

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  1. Manojkumar

    Great work guys! Hyperloop is really a big milestone, after waiting for years.

    But NativeScript has become more popular in short term, seems to have better performance, with more powerful features, easy CSS & advanced JS? given for free.

  2. Mobilizer

    Not sharing the excitement. Was so looking forward to Hyperloop, only to find after all this waiting that it is not available to Indie developers. I can’t really understand the decision to be honest. Upgrading to Pro just for Hyperloop is just not an option at this time.

    • Maduro

      Apple developer program: 99 dollars/year, fully native, Swift.
      Appcelerator pro: 99 dollars/month, hybrid, crossplatform, JS (+ Apple developer program).

      If you only develop for iOS, I don’t know if it makes sense to use Appcelerator, the effort in building apps is very similar.

      My 99 cents 😉

  3. olivier

    Congratulations! Very very nice innovation. And frankly, I’ll be happy to support my development tool with $ 100 per month, it’s really not expensive! I do not understand all these grumpy who would like that everything is free or almost. I’d rather have a profitable, solid provider with clear revenue, which makes money through its customers, as we all do.

    However, maybe that Appcelerator should modulate its price according to the country? $100, this is the price of an hour’s work of a developer in Europe or the USA. Perhaps the price of half a day or a day’s work. The price is very decent. But if Appcelerator has customers in less wealthy countries, maybe that the price should be lower in these countries. But it is not easy to implement, or control…

  4. Ophir

    Congrats on the long waited release. Calling native directly from JS is indeed the next step in cross-platform development (after all people who use cross-platform development that’s like web – are coming to write JS and not native).

    I think that the thing you need to invest in now is the documentation. More specific for the more tech guys about architecture and how things work behind the scenes, what are the advantages of Hyperloop against “normal” modules development and more…

    I’ve asked some here:

  5. Kd

    I have to echo most of the negative comments here about the “pro” plan exclusivity. While the cost isn’t in any way a show-stopper for my business, I’m concerned this is going to draw away the broader developer community, and limit the interest in hyperloop and appcelerator. With other platforms (such as nativescript, mentioned by others) gaining features and becoming more competitive, and with essentially no or little price attached, I can see the average developer (or beginner) just ignoring the hefty price tag of appcelerator and looking elsewhere. The large appcelerator community has been one of its best advantages over the past few years – and this is a massive bottleneck to place on its growth.

    Not to mention that hyperloop has been mentioned and hyped on this blog for years with little or no indication that this price would be attached… It’s all a bit much.

    Technically it seems like a great feature. Applause to the devs behind it. I’ll continue to use appcelerator, but for reasons above I know I’ll personally be looking closer into other platforms for future projects… At least until this pricing decision is revisited by the company.

    • Sam

      This is great news and cant wait to get stuck in with Hyperloop 😉

      £905.88 in not that bad for the whole year.

      I have to echo Kd comments tho, cant wait to use this but i spent a good few days trying to find any good documentation on building a native modules for titanium and still came up short, you feel pretty much like you are on your own to figure out the processes with little to no documentation.

      With the release of Hyperloop i really hope you can confirm before we all take this investment that this will be fully documented and there will be lots of helpful tutorials, example apps etc. Not just here is Hyperloop figure it out and we end up on Stackoverflow waiting for days for a response which leaves you pretty much in limbo with a client app.

      I love Appcelerator and this is a exciting move forward.

      • Hans Knoechel

        Hey Sam! You can find good docs for getting started here (iOS) and here (Android).

        Besides the syntax and the additional capabilities (Cocoapods, jar’s/aar’s, …), the best docs are the native ones iOS and Android provide. If you have other questions, the TiSlack community is pretty active and probably gives you a quicker answer then on StackOverflow. But if you can provide your SO-link, I can take a look as well :-).

        • Sam

          Hi Hans,

          Thanks for the response ill be sure to check that out 😉

          So if i wanted to use google maps i would still use the google map module for crossplatform development!/api/Modules.Map.

          Or would it make sense to use hyperloop titanium java or objective c implementation with the frameworks for both? Probably a stupid question but just curious.



          • Hans Knoechel

            Hey Sam,

            there is no stupid question! It’s a matter of whether you want to use features that are not covered in the native module or not. Since there are already many API’s exposed in the current implementation, you would either need to replace the whole module with Hyperloop or extend the current native one. That’s why it’s more a product management decision on your side 😊.

  6. Johnson Joseph

    This sounds very exciting. Can’t wait to give it a try!!!!!!

  7. Prashant Saini

    Can we try Hyperloop as a trial in Indie plan? If yes, then what’s the process?

    Please help to try it out on trial mode.

    • Erin Bailey

      Hi there – you are not able to trial Hyperloop as part of your Indie plan. But, you can sign up for a free trial to try it out.

  8. Flaviolacer

    Really nice , but i can’t invest in one thing that i don’t know yet. Indie developers does not have access to it. Sorry.

  9. Fábio

    This seems very nice unfortunately not work on indie plan.

    I create 2 ou 3 apps per year is very expensive for me buy a pro plan.

  10. Steeve

    I really cannot understand Appcelerator policy.
    You have a good product and Hyperloop availability is a really great announcement.

    But, why don’t you give access to indie developpers ???
    We want to use Appcelerator … but with Xamarin Free and React Native too …
    why getting a 99$/month subscription ??? Indie developers need to eat and just cannot paid that.

    Do you really think Xamarin don’t paid R&D investments too ?

    • Hans Knoechel

      Hey Steeve,

      from my perspective as a Titanium-developer (not just core-contributor), it’s all about the integration with Titanium Mobile and not just the access of native API’s. The idea behind it is to develop modules and advanced API’s using Hyperloop that fit into your existing Titanium applications. And being able to use the modular structure of Alloy, you can even write your own Hyperloop modules and widgets that can be displayed in your Alloy views. If you don’t want to wrap them into modules but want to use them directly with your code -> fine. And if you want to build native modules with CommonJS and test them directly in their product (without compiling, packaging and referencing), you may benefit of the sugar of the known Javascript syntax. My 2 cents regarding it! :-)

      • Steeve

        From my perspective, Hyperloop is the only thing that rise Appcelerator to Xamarin level (100% API with one language).
        I know that Appcelerator comes with cloud services … but I don’t use them (and don’t want).
        So, for me, Xamarin Indie is free … Appcelerator costs 99$ for an equivalent service.

        Hyperloop is clearly the thing that brings me back to Appcelerator.
        But I just can’t pay 99$ monthly if I can find a true equivalent for free.

        Who are the real Appcelerator sellsmen ? They are indie developpers.
        Because we are small but part of a help community.
        But that community will clearly melt (and it is melting) if Appcelerator treats everyone as cash cow.

        • Hans Knoechel

          Hey Steeve, I won’t doubt that other platforms offer the same idea like Hyperloop does for free, but at the end of the day it’s your decision to choose the integration with the Alloy- and JavaScript-platform or use another language (like C# in your example) as your best choice.

  11. David

    Could an Appcelerator team member please confirm if this announcement means an Indie plan will not be able to create a home screen widget (not Alloy widget) using Javascript? If you have an Indie plan, do you only have the current TiSDK, and anything more will require module dev in Objective-C\Java\C++? I’m considering Appcelerator for an app that will have home screen widgets and charting, but it doesn’t look like the SDK supports this without native dev and WebViews?

    • Hans Knoechel

      Hey David! If I do understand you correctly, you want to build a home-screen widget (for the notification-center) with Titanium. That is possible with your Indie-license. All you need is to create a new app-extension which generates the extension project for you and that can be implemented using Swift or Objective-C. We have plans for enabling the extension-development with Hyperloop as well, but that requires additional tooling around the different targets. You can also check this discussion to see how you actually start with app-extensions. And once again, you can do that using your Indie-license.

      • David

        Hi Hans, thanks for the quick response. That is encouraging news. Although this appears only to be for iOS, what about Android home screen widgets or Windows Tiles? And will charting still require the use of WebViews? We’re trying to get away from WebViews and native development, so we’re hoping Appcelerator can do this.

        • Hans Knoechel

          Hey David, I personally can’t say much about Android and Windows since I’m focussing on iOS, but I don’t see (technical) problem in implementing the widgets. It may require additional CLI like on iOS, but if so, file a ticket for that so we can schedule it. Basically, any native can be exposed with Hyperloop, which also answers your second question: You can replace your current (webview-based) chart-engines with native charts. We actually have a native example that is using Hyperloop to display a native chart here. The example is iOS-based, but there any many Android-based charting frameworks around that could be bridged as well. We might add an example of that in future version of the Hyperloop Sample application. Thanks!

          • Dave

            Many thanks for the info, things are looking up. I’d hope maybe a colleague could’ve pitched in with the Android and Windows side, it’s a key reason why we are considering Appcelerator. I’m surprised about the charting requiring Hyperloop though. The Pro plan is expensive for us, and charting seems such a standard requirement. It looks like Appcelerator can only take you so far, before there’s a hefty bill. Is it true that Indie won’t have Hyperloop?

          • Hans Knoechel

            Hey Dave, Hyperloop is Pro- and Enterprise-only. You can still use native charts modules or wrap them with native (Obj-C/Java) modules if you want.

  12. Sean Conway

    I am concerned by the lack of adequate technical documentation. Enough with the fluff! There is no information on jar clashes with hyperloop modules and classic modules or jars within titanium. Still relying on eclipse and ANT without proper multidexing and gradle is awful for Java developers. React and Nativescript do both, have clear documentation, use best practices and have a good amount of tested third party plugins. Moreover Hyperloop will demand a rewrite of all old modules and new ones to be really useful. Honestly it seems a clunky transition and I doubt you will attract new developers.

    • Hans Knoechel

      Hey Sean, thanks for the feedback! Answering straight forward:

      Regarding the docs: What kind of docs would you expect? We have technical guides for syntax-concepts and adoptions for native API’s to JavaScript. We’d be happy to get more topics that developers are interested in, so your feedback is greatly appreciated.

      Regarding multi-dex-issues: We fixed all multi-dex issues in Titanium 6.0.0 that will be released in this November 2016. Infos and discussion can be found in this ticket.

      Finally, Hyperloop does not demand a rewrite of existing native modules. It is just an alternative for easier module-development by enabling Cocoapods-, jar- and aar-support. They can co-exist without problems and won’t be deprecated in the future.

      Let me know if you have further questions!


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