Smart and Red Bend Unveil the Netphone

Smart Communications, the leading Philippines’ wireless services provider, with 44.1m subscribers, and Red Bend Software, which specialises in mobile software management, have unveiled the Netphone, the world’s first smartphone featuring widgets from the Wholesale Application Community (WAC) that are independently managed over the air. The companies say that Red Bend’s MSM solution will enable SMART to go to market faster with new, revenue-generating services.

The Netphone comes with a suite of apps that provide users with one-touch access to the most popular communications and social networking services, as well as relevant customer account services. Powered by Android 2.2 (Froyo), the device is highly customisable by the user, and comes with its own branded software and apps that are relevant to emerging market customers.

“We chose Red Bend as a strategic partner in our Netphone strategy because of their innovative solution, trusted expertise and unparalleled support in helping to bring our vision to reality,” says Napoleon L. Nazareno, president and CEO of Smart Communications, who serves on the WAC Board of Directors. “With software at the heart of the Netphone experience, it is vital that we have full control over the entire device, ensuring we can rapidly deploy new widgets, applications and services over the air to continually enhance the Netphone’s value, and control the software assets that drive our services revenue.”

Using Red Bend’s standards-based vRapid MSM solution, SMART can manage its suite of SMART-branded embedded software and apps, including WAC-compliant widgets, individually and independently from the OEM’s firmware, using the OMA-DM SCOMO standard. It can also push new, revenue-generating mobile services that use WAC widgets to Netphone subscribers over the air, rather than relying on consumers to discover new apps on the WAC-based SMART Shop or Android Market. And it can offer the same software-managed user experience across different device price points and mobile platforms, including Android and Brew MP.

SMART and Red Bend will showcase a ‘Day in the Life of a Netphone Subscriber’ at Mobile World Congress 2011 in Hall 4, Level 3, Suite 50.