July 1, 2008
A handful of mobile operators unveiled an ambitious initiative on Tuesday, to co-develop a consistent and secure web services interface that can be used by web developers across multiple device platforms.
The move is supported by the OMTP, an operator led community that recommends mobile terminal requirements, and is being spearheaded by 3 Group, AT&T, T-Mobile, Telenor, Telefonica, Telecom Italia and Vodafone.
The Bondi initiative, as it is known, intends to provide the opportunity for web developers to address a mass market of consumers and to drive the use of mobile data services. Under the OMTP umbrella, the group will attempt to integrate various open and proprietary initiatives, in a bid to minimise technology fragmentation.
Bondi expects to be able to expose key handset features to web developers to help them develop more function rich, user friendly applications. The handset software will also be engineered in such a way as to prevent fraudulent and malicious activity through unauthorised access to functions or sensitive personal information. This is in line with the OMTP’s recent security drive.
Commenting on the initiative, Reinhard Kreft, Vodafone’s head of standardisation and industry engagements, said, “With so many diverse mobile devices and operating systems available in today’s marketplace, it can be quite challenging to roll out consistent and compelling new services across such a broad spread. Bondi addresses the need to deliver great services across multiple platforms, whilst ensuring that customers are protected from any risk associated with adopting a more open approach to these systems.”
During his keynote at the Mobile World Congress in Barcelona in February, then Vodafone leader Arun Sarin, called for more consolidation of mobile handset operating systems. Sarin said that just a handful of device OSes need to emerge from the 30 to 40 presently available, and while this latest initiative echoes this call, it also recognises that changes need to be made in the web services framework as well.
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