Sony Ericsson today announced a licensing and cooperation agreement on Java technology with Sun Microsystems. Support for games and entertainment services is a core element of Sony Ericsson's product strategy and Java is a key application enabler for delivering multimedia communications and entertainment services on open platforms to mobile users. The multiyear agreement, signed in December 2001, covers licensing of Java Micro Edition (J2ME) technology, porting services and other technology and marketing cooperation.
Today, Sony Ericsson also launched two GSM-products, the Symbian-based P800 smartphone and the Z700 gaming phone, as well as the T62u for the American TDMA/GSM market. All three products feature Java technology. Sony Ericsson has already launched two products in the Japanese market that support Java.
Leveraging Sony's strong competence and heritage in gaming as well as existing relationships with the game development community will allow Sony Ericsson to offer clearly differentiated products in this market segment.
Java enables an open environment which allows third party applications to be downloaded into the mobile device over-the-air. For consumers this means that new applications can be installed throughout the lifetime of the mobile handset, not just during the initial handset purchase. Whilst this opens up possibilities in several applications areas, gaming is viewed as one of the services which will gain the most from Java capability. For example, consumers will be able to update their phones regularly with new games or game content, such as new levels.
For operators and service providers, application download drives incremental traffic, increases customer loyalty and opens up new revenue opportunities -- for example, charging for access to new game content. Sony Ericsson believes compatibility and interoperability are key success factors to create a mass market for developers and to ensure an easy-to-use, as well as fun-to-use, experience for the user. Sony Ericsson will use standards-based implementations of Java, as exemplified by the commitment to the Symbian operating system, which also provides an extended Java implementation covering both J2ME CLDC/MIDP and PersonalJava/JavaPhone.
In order to support third party games and other application developers Sony Ericsson will make the necessary Software Development Kits (SDK) for its GSM Java-based products available during Q1 2002. Sony Ericsson is cooperating with the major Java development tool vendors to ensure widespread compatibility of the SDK and integration into leading development tools.