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AOL Launches Mobile Developer Program

Staff Writer
Published: 2004-09-27

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LG Electronics, Motorola, Samsung Telecommunications America and Siemens Join AOL Mobile Developer Program to Provide Customers with the Nation's Most Popular Instant Messaging Service.

America Online has launched an industry-wide mobile developer program that will make it easy to develop, test and distribute licensed AOL Instant Messenger (AIM) clients for mobile devices. LG Electronics, Motorola, Samsung Telecommunications America and Siemens have signed on, and OZ, the leading developer of standards-based mobile instant messaging solutions, has also joined the program.

The AOL Mobile Developer Program leverages the open standards of the Open Mobile Alliance (OMA) to produce a better instant messaging experience for mobile users everywhere, regardless of device, service provider, network or geography. Joined by four leading mobile device manufacturers as well as OZ, the AOL Mobile Developer Program marks the industry's first major commercial deployment of OMA's Wireless Village-based Instant Messaging Presence Service (IMPS) standard.

"Working closely with the industry's leading manufacturers, we are able to bring the familiar AOL and AIM Buddy List feature to today's mobile users, helping them to stay in touch with friends, family and associates everywhere they go," said Doug Gardner, executive director, AOL Mobile, America Online, Inc. "We are pleased to be working with some of the industry's most innovative companies as we strive to deliver the very best instant messaging experience through this industry-wide, collaborative effort."

Benefits of the new program include:

1. An AOL Client Certification Kit that includes user interface guidelines, branding elements and functional specifications;

2. Access to AOL's Gateway server, which is compliant with the OMA client server protocol IMPS version 1.1 and version 1.2; and

3. Development support and an expedited AOL review process to help speed the approval of new AIM clients for mobile devices.

By joining the AOL Mobile Developer Program, the leading manufacturers and OZ are ensuring an easy to use and a seamless wireless experience for AOL's community of instant messaging users. These companies were among the first to provide AOL members and AIM users with an AIM branded instant messaging experience on a variety of mobile devices.

More than 18 million mobile instant messages are sent by AOL members and AIM users on a daily basis, and the number of messages sent and received by users on the OMA IMPS-based AIM clients is on the rise.

According to a recent study, 20% of all IM users engage in mobile instant or SMS text messaging at least once a week, and 34% for those aged 13-21 do so. Nearly one in three IM users (31%) say they send mobile instant messages to keep in touch with the office and make business decisions while on travel for work. Nearly three in four (72%) say they send mobile instant messages when they don't have time for a phone conversation, and more than half (52%) say they use mobile instant messaging to keep from disturbing others on public transportation and at sporting events.

More than nine million mobile devices already feature an AIM client, and industry leaders, Nokia and Sony Ericsson have already delivered mobile AIM clients on their popular cellular phones. OMA IMPS-based AIM clients are available on Nokia models 3200, 3100, 1100, 3300, 3595, 6010, 6800, 6820; and Sony Ericsson models T637 and T237.

Under the new AOL Mobile Developer Program, AOL has approved development of the following OMA-based AIM Clients:

-- LG Electronics has delivered the mobile AIM client on its L1200, C1300, G4015, and L1400 models.

-- Motorola has developed an AIM client for several new and yet to launch mobile devices, including the V180, V220, V400, V600 and A630 models.

-- Samsung has delivered the mobile AIM client on its E315, E317 and X427M models, and will deliver it on the C207 when that model is available for public purchase.

-- Siemens has delivered the mobile AIM client on selected C and S class products. -- OZ has created Java-based AIM clients that are pre-installed or embedded on a variety of mobile phones, including HP devices.

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