Sprint plans to make its Xohm WiMax service an open platform with open APIs and an software development kit.
According to Jason Hiner at Techrepublic, Sprint plans to allow hardware and software makers to develop technology that use its WiMAX network.
The rationale here is fairly clear: Sprint needs to leapfrog other carriers if it has any hope of being an independent company. Sprint has always been innovative, but it's been consistently a door mat. Meanwhile, a wireless price war isn't helping matters. Without a dramatic move, Sprint is toast.
The next big question is whether opening up your WiMAX network to developers is going to save Sprint. Here's where things get sticky. WiMAX could quickly get some developer enthusiasm since Intel is a big backer.
According to Atish Gude, the senior vice president of Xohm operations, Sprint will release the SDK and open APIs by the end of the year.
Hiner outlines the gist of the move:
By doing open APIs and an SDK for WiMAX, the idea is to allow applications to become smarter in knowing what device you’re on, where you are, whether you’re stationary or moving, etc. Of course, that naturally sends up privacy red flags.
True, but that privacy bridge can be crossed later. For now, Sprint needs to save itself--and WiMAX as a technology.