Sprint: 'We don't believe in having our own app store'


SAN DIEGO--In a move to further distance itself from its competitors, Sprint Nextel (NYSE:S) confirmed it will not be launching its own branded app storefront.

This move comes in contrast to its key competitors Verizon Wireless (NYSE:VZ) and AT&T Mobility (NYSE:T), which have their own app portals, the Verizon App Store and AT&T Appcenter, respectively. 

"We don't believe in having our own app store. Other people believe they can go in there and monetize...but we don't want to disrupt the ecosystem," said David Owens, vice president of product management and logistics for Sprint, in an interview with FierceMobileContent.

Owens pointed to the company's Sprint Zone effort, which follows more of an app suggestion and discovery model rather than serving as a separate storefront. "[We're] not making money off that. We're just saying that we can be a trusted source for you," Owens said.

The company does, however, offer apps in free bundles through its Sprint ID program. "We want to recommend some things built in bundles," explained Owens, noting Sprint launched its Guardian bundle in May, which offers a variety of premium security and safety features for Android users.

Sprint has been shifting the way it handles apps on its devices, opting to stop preloading third-party apps onto its customers devices. In February, Fared Adib, vice president of product at Sprint, told FierceMobileContent that the company found that users did not like the sheer amount of preloaded apps. But, Sprint does continue to preload some customer tools onto its devices.

Special Report: CTIA MobileCon 2012: Complete coverage

Related articles:
Sprint launches Guardian safety app bundles for Android
Sprint's Adib: Preloading apps isn't the answer
Sprint's Adib on the demise of preloaded apps, the growth of HTML5 and more
Sprint launches Guardian safety app bundles for Android