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Bada Developers Day London Round-up

Surfing the Wave
Bada Developers Day London Round-up
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When Samsung announced that it was to release its own competing mobile platform last year the big question on everyone’s lips was ‘do we really need another?’

With iOS, Android, Symbian, WinMo6.5 already here and with MeeGo and Windows Phone 7 around the corner, it does at first appear to be a strange move by the company.

This isn’t a minor mobile manufacturer spearheading a new platform, though, but the second largest phone maker in the world, and it’s in the middle of a 35-date world tour in an effort to promote the new system and Samsung’s wider app store equivalent, Samsung Apps.

Ride the Wave

Friday’s Developer’s conference in London was a slick and informative day of speeches, Q&As, and presentations, with the emphasis on getting developers on-board and up to speed with the new platform. 

The general reaction from the assembled crowd was positive, with one attendee commenting that the similarities between the iPhone and bada APIs should make porting to the system far easier than Android.

This aspect was highlighted by the range of games shown by the head of the seller office at Samsung Apps, Wonjoon Choi, who demonstrated established iPhone titles like Gameloft’s Asphalt 5 running on the Wave with very little difference in speed and visual fidelity.

For the consumer there was every sign that Samsung is taking lessons learned from watching how competitors have succeeded (and failed), in their own efforts to rival iTunes’ App Store.

This has meant an already attractive looking front-end that looks like a hybrid of the Android Market and App Store, as well as a far greater number of payment options that don’t require a registered account to use.

Flood defenses

On the subject of censorship and certification, Samsung stressed how transparent its process would be when compared to Apple’s, providing developers with a checklist to work against, as well as promising to email exact reasons for any failure and an average approval period of 3-4 working days.

There are still questions surrounding some of the more contentious issues in the guidelines that list ‘violating social norms’ as a no-go area, with the banning of political imagery a particularly disliked feature among certain developers in the crowd.

However, the overall impression of the conference was a positive one, and it’s clear that Samsung is confident that bada can find a place in the crowded mobile platform market.