Last Friday, Sprint took the opportunity to officially debut its Sprint Direct Connect Plus (SDC Plus) offering. The service is basically the major US wireless carrier’s newest push to talk (PTT) solution, which should allow business or corporate teams to enjoy real time telecoms services with just one press. The Sprint Direct Connect Plus feature is powered by Kodiak Networks’ PTT platform, and offers full support for Wi-Fi connectivity, presence information, and even tablet devices.
According to the number four mobile operator in the United States, the Sprint Direct Connect Plus service is now made available by way of a downloadable app that can run on the Android and iOS mobile operating systems for $5 a month. A number of mobile devices built by Kyocera will offer support for the service via dedicated buttons for PTT calls. These devices are: the Kyocera DuraXTP, the Kyocera DuraForce Pro, and the Kyocera DuraTR.
It is worth mentioning that Sprint is not the only carrier delivering PTT solutions in the market. As a matter of fact, industry leaders Verizon Wireless and AT&T also offer similar services to businesses. As for Sprint, it is looking to continue building on its newly launched Sprint Direct Connect Plus feature, and will likely start to introduce expanded options some time this year.
It was back in May of last year when Sprint first mentioned about its upcoming PTT solution. At that time, the national wireless service provider had already hinted that the offering would be geared for enterprises, especially those with teams, allowing them to make PTT calls using Wi-Fi networks, among many others.
Some may remember that nearly seven years ago, Sprint had introduced a separate and somewhat different offering called Direct Connect, in collaboration with chip manufacturer Qualcomm. That earlier feature had represented a 3G CDMA edition of the then widely used Nextel Direct Connect PTT solution (which ran on iDEN), a service that Sprint subsequently owned after completing its acquisition of Nextel more than a decade ago.
In the case of this year’s Sprint Direct Connect Plus offering, the carrier has decided to shift from Qualcomm to Kodiak Networks, which happens to be operated by Motorola Solutions. There is some interesting PTT related history here -- Kodiak Networks is a firm that specializes in delivering PTT solutions, and was bought by Motorola Solutions last August. Motorola itself happens to be the original provider of the iDEN platform developed by Nextel. iDEN is considered by many as one of the first ever to sell PTT offerings.
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