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Qualcomm Brews Phone App Platform

Qualcomm Wednesday said it has created an open platform for developing applications for wireless phones.

The company said its Binary Runtime Environment for Wireless (BREW) will work for phones that use Qualcomm's Code Division Multiple Access (CDMA) integrated circuits, a technology that Qualcomm has championed. The company said the platform will simplify application development for those phones, will maximize airtime usage and will enable users to download applications wirelessly.

Qualcomm separately announced that a variety of wireless carriers, manufacturers and application developers have said they will develop for the platform. Among those who signed on are Verizon Wireless, Leap, Korea Telecom Freetel, Samsung and Kyocera Wireless.

Wireless operators must use Qualcomm's QIS Middleware product for distributing and managing applications and billing. It will charge a fee and receive a portion of fees paid by end users to the operators, according to the company.

However, device vendors can receive the platform without paying licensing fees, Qualcomm said. On the phone, the platform will have a footprint of less than 100Kbps, the company said. It said the BREW environment supports most programming languages, including C/C++ and that microbrowsers, Java applications will be supported, too.

Qualcomm said it will release the BREW software developers kit in May for free.