A winning combination of Nokia’s innovative devices and unique tools in music, imaging and location services are the magical ingredients that are helping developers find success with quality apps.
This was the clear message to a packed auditorium of enthusiastic developers taking part in the Nokia App Developer Conference on the opening day of Mobile World Congress in Barcelona.
Led by Marco Argenti, Head of Developer Experience at Nokia, a succession of speakers underlined how Nokia is dedicated to helping developers find success, get more downloads, monetise their creations and make better apps with tried and tested tools provided for free.
Chief among these tools are our industry-leading technologies in areas such as music, imaging and location services. These platforms are freely available to developers who can easily integrate them in their own apps.
A developer, for example, can use Nokia Music’s API to integrate music into their own app. In addition, the developer doesn’t need to negotiate individual music deals; that all comes with Nokia Music.
Creating richer app experiences benefits the developer and, of course, it also benefits the end user of the app – people like you and me. Quality was the watchword of the day.
To demonstrate the possibilities provided by these tools to create great experiences for Windows Phone devices, several new apps were unveiled at the Nokia App Developer conference.
- Burton: An app that has everything a snowboarder needs: snow and weather forecasts, cool music playlists, locate your friends on the slopes and Burton Sequencer, a camera lens using Nokia camera technology to combine a sequence of action shots in a single photo.
- Foursquare: This popular social mapping experience is coming to Windows Phone 8 with voice commands, NFC content sharing and full Nokia Maps integration; Nokia’s exclusive version of the app will have augmented reality for discovering places of interest. A brand new Foursquare app will also be coming soon to Nokia Asha devices.
- Tumblr: This Windows Phone 8 app for Tumblr will allow on-the-go posting of text, images, video, audio, links, quotes and chats. It will also be the first official Tumblr app on any operating system to integrate voice controls. Plus, there’s a Live Tile to show your Tumblr dashboard.
- JobLens: This revolutionary app makes uses the power of augmented reality and Nokia’s location technology to connect people with jobs in the offices and buildings around them. It is also integrated with Indeed, the world’s most comprehensive jobs search engine, and professional social network, LinkedIn.
- GoPro: Connect your Nokia Lumia 920 to a GoPro HERO3 or HERO2 camera to capture videos and photos, access and change the camera settings and view the results. The GoPro app will be available on all Windows Phone 8 devices, but exclusively on Lumia is the picture-in-picture feature, which overlays the Lumia camera view on top of the GoPro camera view.
It was also a good day for a couple of messaging apps. It was announced that WhatsApp will be coming soon to Dual-SIM Asha devices and enhanced features are on the way for the Windows Phone 8 version.
Messaging application, Line and its lovable sticker characters, also unveiled its first Asha app.
We’ll be taking a much closer look at all these apps in the weeks to come.
As if unveiling these apps was not inspiring enough for the folks in attendance at the Nokia App Developer Conference, there was further encouragement for them too.
Nokia’s support for developers doesn’t just end with sharing its APIs – it goes much further than that.
There is high quality commercial support including help with operator billing agreements and monetisation tools like in-app purchasing. There is the Nokia Premium Developer Program, which offers tools and support to make the best possible apps, and there’s also Nokia Ad Exchange that makes it easy for developers to incorporate adverts in their apps.
Perhaps most exciting of all is that developing for Nokia ensures that you get access to cutting edge technology and unique hardware.
This was wonderfully demonstrated by Kevin Hague, Director of Tools and Technology on the Nokia Developer Experience team, who showed off some cool examples of 3D shells for the Nokia Lumia 820 that were created by developers after Nokia released the 3DK information.
It wasn’t just all about support and help for developers – there were some challenges issued too!
It was announced that DVlup, which rewards Windows Phone coding challenges with points and prizes, was coming out of beta and coming to the UK.
Developers for Nokia Asha had their own challenge to create the best app for Asha Touch devices in four categories: music and entertainment; games; utilities and productivity; and news and information. Winners receive a cash prize.
Just last month, the Windows Phone Store had its one billionth download. Meanwhile, in the Nokia Store India Games and Inode have both just passed the 200m download mark. Clearly, there is no better time for developers to get involved and get a slice of the action.