Mobile app developers to get their own professional organization

Mobile application developers are set to gain an industry association that would promote their interests, enabling collaboration and product testing while offering education, cloud hosting, and governmental lobbying on their behalf.

Being led by Jon Potter, former executive director of the Digital Media Association, the Application Developers Alliance is set to get off the ground with promotions at CES (Consumer Electronics Show) in Las Vegas next week and elsewhere. While Web developers also would be welcome, the alliance is initially geared to mobile development for platforms including Apple iOS, Google Android, and RIM BlackBerry. The alliance is looking to recruit thousands of developers. “We’re going to be at the meetups all around the country, we’re going to be at conferences, we’re going to be talking to folks, we’re going to be polling people,” said Potter.

“Our thought now is there’s an interesting space in the application developer community that isn’t really organized,” and could use service offerings, said Potter, who is developing the organization along with several associates. Key services included as part of the alliance include:

    • a collaboration network, via an online database
    • product-testing facilities offering access to multiple platforms and tools
    • discounted and free tutorials on trends and technologies, as well as structured training and certification programs
    • discounted hosting and cloud services via Rackspace

Lobbying for government policies to assist developers is expected to be part of the initiative. “There’s developer interest in privacy [policy],” as well as IP policies pertaining to patents and copyrights, Potter said. Mobile broadband policies also would be part of the alliance’s efforts. Expected backers of alliance, Potter said, include Google and RIM, although neither vendor could offer any feedback on the alliance last month. Apple and Microsoft are not participating, said Potter. The alliance will look to generate revenues via sponsors and, over time, membership fees.

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