Introducing the Wholesale Applications Community

As everyone’s eye is on Microsoft’s Windows Phone 7 Series announcement today, news has broke that two dozen of the world’s leading telecommunication operators have formed an alliance to take on Apple’s application store. The announcement of the Wholesale Applications Community is aimed at uniting a fragmented marketplace and to create an open industry platform that benefits everybody.

Three of the worlds largest device manufacturers, LG, Samsung, and Sony Ericsson, have all joined in the movement with carriers such as AT&T, Vodafone, Sprint, and Verizon. The alliance plans to use both JIL and OMTP BONDI requirements to form a common standard within the next twelve months.

"The GSMA is fully supportive the Wholesale Applications Community, which will build a new, open ecosystem to spur the creation of applications that can be used regardless of device, operating system or operator," said Rob Conway, CEO and Member of the Board, GSMA. "This approach is completely in line with the principles of the GSMA, and in fact leverages the work we have already undertaken on open network APIs (OneAPI). This is tremendously exciting news for our industry and will serve to catalyse the development of a range of innovative cross-device, cross-operator applications."

According to the alliance’s website, the objective is to “establish a simple route to market for developers, in turn, providing access to the latest and widest range of innovative applications and services to as many customers as possible worldwide. This alliance will deliver scale unparalleled by any application distribution ecosystem in existence today.”

Full list of partners in the alliance: América Móvil, AT&T, Bharti Airtel, China Mobile, China Unicom, Deutsche Telekom, KT, mobilkom austria group, MTN Group, NTT DoCoMo, Orange, Orascom Telecom, Softbank Mobile, Telecom Italia, Telefónica, Telenor Group, TeliaSonera, SingTel, SK Telecom, Sprint, Verizon Wireless, VimpelCom, Vodafone and Wind.

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