There’s no question that without applications, wireless devices don’t amount to much. Nokia recognizes this need and created an organization to oversee application development for its handsets, which is headed by Lee Epting. Prior to joining Nokia, Epting spent 15 years in Silicon Valley and helped build the Palm OS platform at Palm and later at Handspring. At Handspring, Epting launched the Springboard expansion platform for Visor handhelds, launched a wireless development platform for the Treo communicator and created Handspring’s Enterprise Alliance program. With accomplishments such as these under her belt, it’s no wonder Nokia brought her on board as the VP of developer operations.
Mobile Enterprise: Explain a little bit about what Forum Nokia does.
Lee Epting: Today, the mobility industry is much more than just bringing voice communications to users. This leads to a more important role for mobile software applications.
Understanding that Nokia cannot serve the various needs of consumers and enterprises alone, it is very important for us to work with a rich base of developers, that can help us ensure that users will have a wide range of applications and content to enhance and personalize their devices and businesses can improve their performance through extended mobility.
For developers and content providers, Forum Nokia, the world’s largest mobile developer community, with over 1.8 million registered developers, provides the front door to working with Nokia at every level, helping developers to be successful through extensive technical and business support.
ME: Nokia recently announced the 3rd Edition of the Series 60 Platform. What is Forum Nokia’s strategy for supporting the growing number of Series 60 handsets in the market?
LE: Series 60 Platform 3rd Edition extends the business opportunities available from the world’s leading smartphone platform. For example, the platform is very well suited for developing robust end-to-end enterprise solutions that will meet the requirements of the most advanced IT managers.
We believe that this will make Series 60 an even more attractive choice for experienced mobile developers as well as new entrants and, as a result, we will rapidly see volumes of innovative new applications on the market. To drive this development, Forum Nokia has announced a set of integrated development kits and tools, helping developers get down to application development quickly. In addition, we offer developers extensive documentation, training
opportunities and support, not to mention global application delivery systems and business models like Preminet Solution.
ME: While still a small segment of the mobile phone business, smartphone deployments in the enterprise are on the rise. Where do you see enterprise applications fall into the mix of Series 60–supported applications?
LE: We have foreseen the increasing need for mobility and productivity solutions, and therefore enterprise applications and business and productivity solutions have for a long time been one of the key focus areas for Forum Nokia. Today, over 50 percent of Forum Nokia PRO developers work on enterprise and business productivity solutions. Just recently, Forum Nokia published a new version of the Mobile Enterprise & Productivity Solutions catalog featuring more than 130 different enterprise and productivity applications, services and solutions. As more segments of the market are opened up we will see more devices delivered on Series 60 that are targeted to the enterprise, and we believe that our enterprise developers will take full advantage of the opportunity.