Wednesday, 9 May 2012

Bell, Rogers, TELUS Partner on New Development Tools

Bell, Rogers, TELUS Partner on New Development Tools
Three major Canadian mobile service providers - Bell Mobility, Rogers Communications and TELUS – are working with common development tools intended to reduce the effort and time needed to create mobile content and network applications that they can all use.
Working with the international industry association GSMA, the OneAPI Gateway has now been launched, offering application developers a standard set of APIs (application programming interfaces) available to the Canadian Mobile Network Operators (MNOs).

The GSMA OneAPI, or Open Network Enabler API, is described as a set of lightweight and Web friendly APIs that allows mobile and other network operators to expose useful network information and capabilities to Web application developers.
Regardless of which MNO and which device the mobile subscriber is using, the program intends to reduce time to market and integration costs for new apps and services. The Gateway will be operated by Transaction Network Services (TNSI) on behalf of the GSMA and a portal has been launched where the developer can easily contract with the various MNOs.
GSMA OneAPI is developed in public and based on existing Web standards and principles. Any network operator or service provider is able to implement GSMA OneAPI.
The formal production launch of the GSMA OneAPI Gateway follows a successful commercial pilot which was launched in February 2010 in Canada and aimed to lower the technical and commercial barriers to entry. This pilot program demonstrated the commercial benefits of a single gateway approach and use of Network API's to improve conversation rates, reduce refunds, and maintain subscriber privacy. The Gateway is available to any developer and any operator.
"Previously, application developers were required to implement many different interfaces to MNOs from their application to launch cross-network services, and now with the GSMA OneAPI Gateway, MNOs and developers benefit from reduced application development and integration time," said Alex Sinclair, Chief Technology Officer, GSMA. "By using the GSMA OneAPI Gateway, developers have a larger addressable market, can provide an enhanced customer experience and produce new revenue opportunities for mobile operators and developers alike."
GSMA has been a leader in defining a set of API standards - known as OneAPI, which have been adopted as an agreed global standard for Network APIs working across mobile networks. APIs currently supported by the GSMA OneAPI gateway include Carrier Billing Payment APIs (where a variable price can be charged to the consumer), SMS, and Location, with further OneAPI capabilities such as MMS, Data Connection Profile and call control which may be added later.
"The GSMA OneAPI Gateway will enrich the customer experience by greatly expanding the potential for new and exciting apps that integrate location and payment services across the various device operating systems," said Nauby Jacob, Vice President of Services, Products and Content at Bell Mobility. "Bell is proud that Canadian wireless operators are taking a leading role by adopting this innovative initiative first."
"Rogers supports a standard approach to application development. GSMA OneAPI enables developers to bring innovative applications to the Canadian market quickly and easily," said Upinder Saini, Vice President of New Product Development Rogers Communications.
"GSMA OneAPI meets the need for operator and device-agnostic functionality," said Brent Allison, VP Partner Solutions, TELUS. "We expect developers to see even more value as additional MNOs join and extend the gateway's reach."
The GSMA has established a streamlined web-based contract between the developer and the GSMA, which allows developers to connect to multiple operators much more quickly, with the ability to run live SMS or Location API based apps (to a small number of mobile numbers to facilitate app testing) within just a few minutes of signing up. The GSMA OneAPI gateway can also manage obtaining authorization from the consumer to provide their location to the developer and can also confirm consumer authorization for payment requests. This simplifies the app for the developer whilst ensuring that appropriate authorizations are received from the consumer. The OneAPI Gateway is aimed at making it easier for developers to create many more mobile services and applications. The benefit to mobile operators will be that more developers create more applications reaching more mobile users far more simply than ever before. This in turn leads to increased network service usage and therefore revenues for mobile operators.
The GSMA (first formed as the Groupe Speciale Mobile) represents the interests of mobile operators worldwide, including nearly 800 of the world's mobile operators, as well as more than 200 companies in the broader mobile ecosystem, including handset makers, software companies, equipment providers, Internet companies, and media and entertainment organizations.
For more Mediacaster Magazine coverage related to this topic, please see:
Canadian Mobile Operators Heading for Future
Mobile Industry Trade Group Appoints Marketing Chief
BC Wireless Innovation Centre Rings Up Rogers for LTE Innovation and Development
High Speed Network Opens Up New Digital Platform for Development and Innovation
Interactive TV Advertising Gets Boost as Development Tools Released

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