We’ve got a new series coming here on Mobile Industry Review. It’s called Mobile Developer Titans. It’s supported by Telefonica’s developer programme, BlueVia (more about that below). I’m hunting for 10 mobile developers to profile here on the site.
I’m not interested in featuring just any developer in the series, though. I’m looking for developers who’ve actually gone beyond the bog-standard iPhone app. I’m looking for developers with demonstrable vision, talent and serious capabilities. Fundamentally, I’m looking to profile developers who understand that whilst today might be all about the App Store, tomorrow is about delivering an interconnected experience, ideally built upon and using the whole power of the network.
For a long time now I’ve been a little frustrated with the current crop of point-and-click application interface layers that we see on today’s mobile phones. As I noted back in May, it’s just not good enough. I need things to be faster, more connected and more reliable. If anything, I need the network to do a lot of the basic thinking for me.
When you talk to developers, the idea of being able to control a mobile network — or at least influence it via a standard Twitter-like API is outrageously cool, but utterly impossible. So much so that most developers don’t actually think about this. They have sensibly stuck to the API documents for the handsets because working with operators is generally impossible. The holy grail with mobile development is the ability to connect your application (or service) to the mobile operator network layer(s) — allowing you to do all kinds of phenomenal things. The sad reality is that this kind of thing has been out of reach for far too long.
It was, therefore, rather exciting to hear what Telefonica is doing with BlueVia. Suffice to say that the mobile operator API I’ve been screaming about for some time has arrived. In the first instance, the BlueVia APIs allow for the ability to originate and receive SMS, include mobile advertising and query user context (e.g. handset, connection speed, parental controls). This is available for 80 million people right now, including the entire o2 UK customer base. Needless so say, given Telefonica’s huge worldwide footprint, there’s a lot more coming both in terms of market access and functionality.
I sat down with James Parton from BlueVia recently to fire a load of questions at him. During that meeting I remarked that I’d like to see how leading mobile developers would use the initial APIs available on BlueVia. I had all sorts of ideas. I am particularly enamoured by the revenue model. I’m going to be investigating this in a lot more depth but let me summarise it thus: You can monetise all the message traffic generated by your app and, at the same time, avoid having to pay an SMS aggregator to send messages! Plus, you can plug straight into the BlueVia mobile advertising system with just a few lines of code. By the end of the meeting we’d worked out a plan whereby BlueVia would sponsor a series of posts here on Mobile Industry Review.
Are you a Mobile Developer Titan?
Therefore I am now on the hunt for mobile developers who’d like to be profiled in this series. To qualify, you need to:
a) Have had at least 2 applications published on one of the mobile application stores (or have developed a rocking mobile web application)
b) Have the capabilities to integrate one of BlueVia’s standard APIs into a demo version of your app so we can see how you’ve interfaced with the network layer. Screenshots or a video is fine. This qualification sets the men from the boys. (Or the women from the girls.) If your programmers can’t handle BlueVia’s industry standard restful interface, you probably shouldn’t be featured as a ‘Titan’ anyway.
c) Demonstrate that you quality for Mobile Titan status. This is defined by you and then agreed with by me. Tell me why you’re good. (Please don’t be British and say you’re ‘ok’. If you’ve created a series of amazing apps and you think you should be profiled, say so.)
The profile piece will include background on your organisation, a focus on your app(s) along with your opinion on the marketplace plus a showcase of your hacking skills featuring some kind of BlueVia API integration. For those developers located in the UK, I’d like to film a video interview with you showing off your work.
To be clear though, the series is open to anyone, anywhere. It’s platform agnostic. Symbian, Samsung Bada, Vodafone 360/JIL, Apple, Android, the whole shebang. Plus mobile web application developers — I’m particularly keen to talk to some of them.
I’ve a few developers in mind already who I’d like to showcase, but I wanted to get this post up first before beginning to decide.
The resulting profile piece will be published on the frontpage of Mobile Industry Review in a dedicated section. The site gets some phenomenally influential readers normally — but I’ve agreed with James that each of the profile pieces from this series will be circulated around Telefonica’s senior management and syndicated on BlueVia’s online properties. So if you’d like to get on Telefonica’s radar with your application or service, this is quite possibly one of the best opportunities ever.
– If you’re a public relations professional representing a mobile developer, please do check that your client can manage option ‘b’above before dropping me a note
– I’m aiming to begin publishing within a few weeks
– I’ll aim to showcase the first 10 developers who get in touch — however I reserve the right to say no if I don’t think you meet criteria A and C in the list above
If you’ve any questions, drop me a note. As always I’m firstname.lastname@example.org.