7:00 AM -- Verizon Wireless kicks off its annual developers' conference in Las Vegas Tuesday, at the super-swanky Aria hotel. As in years past, Long Term Evolution (LTE) will be an underlying theme, but this year, developers have an actual network to work with.
LTE is the most important thing the carrier has going on, says Todd Murphy, director of Verizon's consumer solutions group. Verizon covers 160 million U.S. consumers with the 4G network and has its first several LTE smartphones on the market. (See Verizon Wireless Covers 160M+ With LTE and Verizon Launches LTE Droid Bionic on Sept. 8.)
For developers, Verizon's guests of honor this week, this 4G blanket means a few things:
- Multiplayer games, high-definition content and augmented reality are all within reach.
- They'll need to consider how to balance high-quality content with being mindful of the bandwidth consumed, as consumers will be on tiered plans.
- Network APIs will become more useful. For example, Murphy says Verizon will begin offering a "terminal status" API soon that tells a developer when a device is on, idle or off to help them decide when to send data over the network.
- It'll be harder to blame the network if your app runs slowly.
- Battery life will be an important consideration, because most games and video-based content will burn it right up.
- Apps will have to run consistently over 3G and 4G, because drop-offs will be the norm until LTE is ubiquitous in the U.S.
In addition to getting developers on its side for LTE, Verizon will be showing off its revamped developer site, developer.verizon.com, and talking app distribution and money making. It'll also be showing off its own V Cast app store, but one thing that won't get any face time is the Wholesale Applications Community (WAC). Murphy says there's not much going on there.
Check back this week for more Verizon LTE goodness, but first brush up on recent news below.
— Sarah Reedy, Senior Reporter, Light Reading Mobile