Here's the list of new features Java 7 will bring (consult JDK 7 project page for more details):
Features are listed in order, more or less, from lowest to highest in the overall JDK software stack.
For me one of the most interesting changes are "Small language enhancements" that come from project Coin.
The goal of Project Coin is to determine what set of small
language changes should be added to JDK 7. That list is:
- Strings in switch
- Binary integral literals and underscores in numeric literals
- Multi-catch and more precise rethrow
- Improved type inference for generic instance creation
- Simplified varargs method invocation
All Java developers have waited for this moment since December 2006 when JDK 6 was released. It was the longest and the most painful release in Java history. It took almost five years to do it while for previous versions the period between releases was more or less two years. Of course, five years waiting for new Java was the effect of many factors like problems of Sun (eventually bought by Oracle), making JDK an open source project and thus opening a pandora's box of non-open source licenses, etc.
But it's finally here.
Now we'll wait for JDK 8 with lambda expressions that were supposed to be delivered in version 7 but actually it's good that JDK guys decided to postpone some features to finally release it.
Enjoy and celebrate the new JDK 7.