Last week's Mobile Cluster seminar, Carrier Innovation Labs: Developer Opportunities! brought AT&T , Sprint, and Verizon together on a single panel for the sole purpose of educating our region's developers on the many opportunities for partnering with them.
James Geshwiler, Managing Director of CommonAngels opened the panel with the plethora of programs and initiatives that involved carriers today. From spectrum licensing to security to the internet of things, he spoke of how carriers can use "innovation to shift economics back to the innovation providers."
Ted Stecko from the Verizon Innovation Center educated the audience on the LTE Innovation Center, which was launched to discover new revenue sources, much that is focused on the internet of things and Machine to Machine (M2M). Verizon's Innovation Center offers different levels of engagement. A company who is creating for a small or niche market share is able to connect to the LTE network just by passing through the certification process. An innovation that could result in larger market-share has an opportunity to be advised to help grow and develop the product. Verizon also has its own venture arm, 4G VentureForum.
Pete Dawson spoke about the options available to developers at Sprint Collaboration Centers, which include Sprint just serving as the network behind the scenes; developers utilizing Sprint technologies to create their own innovations; and partnering. Currently Sprint has 2 major focus areas: video and mobile health. They have four platforms for those areas: 1) analytics, 2) security, 3) cloud, and 4) commerce.
Paul Steel at AT&T was there to represent their Foundries, which are located all over the world and exist to help smaller developers get their innovations out the door.
All of the panelists agreed that they wanted to help support developers and were happy to provide introductions to other vendors or give them advice on the best 'off-the-shelf' technologies to start off with. It not only helps get these small innovators developments out the door, but allows them to build relationships with them as they grow.
Before we broke off for networking and one on one time with the panel members, they did urge developers to not only connect with the innovation centers but with other infrastructure providers that could also provide an entry for support and partnerships.