Java developers are increasingly becoming interested in cloud-native Java, according to the findings of a new study from the Eclipse Foundation. The study also showed that there has been significant adoption of Jakarta EE 8. 

The 2020 Jakarta EE Developer Survey is based on responses from thousands of Java developers. There was a 19% increase in participation from 2019. 

According to the Eclipse Foundation’s data, the number of certifications for Full Platform Compatible Products for Jakarta EE has been greater in the past 8 months than certifications for Java EE were in over 2 years. 

Is Java still relevant? 
Jakarta EE to focus on cloud native development

There has also been growing interest in the Jakarta EE community itself. “In addition to significant interest in Jakarta EE and the community’s progress toward Jakarta EE 9, the Eclipse Foundation is seeing record growth in membership, as we added more members in Q1 2020 than any time since our inception,” said Thabang Mashologu, vice president of marketing for the Eclipse Foundation. “This maps to the increased interest in the open source model worldwide.”

According to the survey, Jakarta EE was the second most popular cloud-native Java framework after Spring/Spring Boot, with 35% usage. In addition, Red Hat’s Quarkus, which is a Kubernetes-native Java framework, is now being used by 16% of developers, after being announced just last year. 

The report showed that interest in microservices by Java developers has actually decreased by 4% since last year. The Eclipse Foundation believes this might be due to developers realizing that microservices are not a “one size fits all” solution. Still, microservices remain the top architectural approach for implementing Java systems in the cloud, with 39% of developers considering them. There was also still an increase in the desire for better support for microservices in Jakarta EE. 

Interest in Eclipse Che is also growing. Eclipse Che is a Java-based cloud IDE for creating Kubernetes applications. Usage of Eclipse Che has risen to 11% this year, up from 4% in 2019. 

Finally, the organization found that Java 8 adoption has dropped from 84% in 2019 to 64% in 2020. This is thought to be an indication that Java 11 is replacing Java 8 at the default Java version. 

Along with the survey results, the Eclipse Foundation also released a preview of Jakarta EE 9. According to the Eclipse Foundation, this is a major milestone release and marks the completion of the transition from Java EE. It is also a critical step in the evolution of cloud native Java.

“The Jakarta EE 9 milestone is the first glimpse of a new era that introduces a new namespace that will give us the freedom to update specifications, introduce new features, add new technologies, and boost the pace of innovation,” said Cesar Hernandez, senior software engineer at Tomitribe, a member of the Eclipse Foundation.