In the application developer community, 7.1 million JavaTM developers are creating desktop applications, but only around 3.6 million developers are creating mobile applications.* Sprint is changing that today by announcing a next-generation open software platform, initially deploying with the Sprint TitanTM platform for Sprint Windows Mobile devices. The open software platform will reach the larger audience of developers by enabling them to use the same codes, tools and resources in the mobile environment as those used for desktop applications. Sprint’s open developer tools will be a focus of Sprint’s eighth annual Application Developer Conference, taking place Dec. 10–12.
"Our announcement today represents another industry-first for Sprint,” said Len Barlik, vice president of wireless and wireline services for Sprint. “We are presenting a way to unify the desktop and mobile developer communities to accelerate the delivery of innovative services to our customers. This is another example of Sprint’s long history of leadership in working closely with developers to encourage them to create new content that can be offered on Sprint phones. The Sprint Application Developer Conference brings together hundreds of developers each year so they have a clear understanding of the most current information on exciting products and developer tools.”
Sprint’s Open Software Platform
The Sprint platform is an open, standards-based mobile Java ecosystem that extends desktop computing and Web 2.0 capabilities to devices operating on the Sprint Mobile Broadband Network. To get started, developers can access the full suite of Sprint Titan development resources at http://developer.sprint.com. It is the first of several open software platforms that Sprint will make available to developers.
The platform supports existing MIDP Java ME applications and adds the more capable CDC/Foundation Java Virtual Machine and OSGi framework for new high-capability applications. Support for the Eclipse embedded Rich Client (eRCP) application model means the platform can run generically written rich GUI applications across a broad range of devices and desktop computers. Support for the Widget application model provides Web developers the ability to develop rich Web applications that take full advantage of the device’s functionality. This allows developers to easily move Eclipse-based or Web applications from the desktop to Sprint devices. The platform also includes APIs to give developers access to Sprint-specific device features, such as location, messaging and multimedia, which can be useful in a variety of business- and consumer-oriented applications, such as field service or unified messaging.
As part of today’s launch, the platform is available with its own set of developer tools that plug in to Eclipse IDE and support both mobile and non-mobile application development and deployment. The toolset leverages existing server or desktop frameworks and provides on-device debugging and profiling, along with device emulation.
For enterprise customers, the open platform leverages the same JAVA application development framework that many customers already use for desktops and servers. This means applications can be easily extended to Sprint wireless devices with little resource training or additional investment beyond what is already in place today. In addition to extending enterprise applications to the mobile environment, the platform enables device management functionality so account administrators can remotely manage their devices and applications.
Application Developer Program
Sprint’s Application Developer Conference has provided tools for third-party developers to create wireless applications that customers can run on Sprint phones since 2001, when Sprint launched the Wireless Web on its phones. Rich Miner, Google vice president of mobile technology, will deliver a keynote speech at this year’s conference. Other keynote speakers this year include Dan Hesse, CEO of Sprint, and Steve Elfman, president of network operations and wholesale for Sprint.
The developer conference is held by the Sprint Application Developer Program (ADP), which provides industry-leading developer support. Additional resources available through the ADP include handset specifications, online forums for interaction and knowledge sharing, white papers and interactive online training. A monthly newsletter distributed to registered developers highlights key wireless data activity, such as handset launches and new mobile development capabilities. For more information, please visit the Sprint ADP Web site at http://developer.sprint.com.
Sprint’s ADP also offers a Professional Developer Program, which extends advanced capabilities to members for an annual fee. Benefits include access to the majority of Sprint’s restricted APIs (including GPS, address book and messaging) required to permit more sophisticated applications, plus enhanced technical support and access to the certification process. Developers who would like to join the Professional Developer Program can visit the ADP Web site and click “Working with Us.”
Sprint’s Open Strategy
In addition to speaking at Sprint’s Application Developer Conference, Elfman will hold a “Buzz About Wireless” live chat on the subject of Sprint’s Application Developer Program and open strategy at 12:30 p.m. (EST) on Dec. 18. For more information, please visit www.buzzaboutwireless.com.
Sprint is committed to offering mobile content and applications to its customers when, where and how they want them:
* Sprint has employed an open Internet approach, and the Sprint Application Developer Program has been providing tools for third-party developers since Sprint first launched the Wireless Web on its phones in 2001.
* Through relationships with third parties, hundreds of non-Sprint-branded applications, games and other digital media may be downloaded from the mobile Internet to operate on Sprint phones.
* More than 200 different non-Sprint-branded devices, from machine-to-machine to telemetry, operate on the Sprint network through a widely respected device certification process.
* Sprint is a charter member of the Open Handset Alliance, along with more than 30 other participating companies, supporting the free and open mobile applications platform named Android.
* According to Evans Data Corporation.