Native development



Native application development is not officially supported.

An unofficial toolchain is maintained here: webosbrew/meta-lg-webos-ndk

Native APIs are reverse engineered here: webosbrew/tv-native-apis


Some common Linux-world libraries and services are present on webOS devices:

argv handling

Native apps receive a JSON object in argv[1] looking similar to this one:


When porting existing software, this probably needs to be ignored.

Running native apps in root shell

jailer is an internal tool used to contain applications in their own jails. (chroot-based containers)

In order to properly launch a native application in a root shell to see its stdout/stderr streams, the following command needs to be executed:

# Replace with your app id and adjust main binary path accordingly
XDG_RUNTIME_DIR=/tmp/xdg /usr/bin/jailer -t native_devmode -i -p /media/developer/apps/usr/palm/applications/ /media/developer/apps/usr/palm/applications/ '{"@system_native_app":true,"nid":""}' --my-extra-options

Native Services

While not officially supported, Native Services can be implemented in homebrew apps. For docs on how to achieve this check webOS OSE documentation.

Native services are only properly supported since webOS 4.x. On earlier versions service premissions are not set up properly, leading to applications being unable to contact the service. (in these cases a service is started up, but no method can be called) On these platforms Homebrew Channel elevate-service script can be used to fixup these permissions.

For an example homebrew application that contains a Native Service check PicCap/hyperion-webos.