NearVerse will use Qualcomm’s AllJoyn technology for device-to-device communication, which uses Bluetooth and WiFi. AllJoyn is similar to Apple‘s Bonjour, which finds services within a local network, such as printers and file-sharing services in an office environment. LoKast uses AllJoyn to form ad-hoc connections between devices, which is much of what LoKast has been capable of before, for instance in sharing media (video, music) from one device to another.
So why the partnership with Qualcomm? According to CEO Boris Bogatin, it’s a matter of upping the quality of LoKast. Technology like AllJoyn, which uses Bluetooth and WiFi for positioning and data transfer instead of GPS and 3G, will make sharing content and discovering other devices—other people—faster and more accurate. And while LoKast benefits greatly from using a better wireless technology, it needs a partner with bigger resources to actually develop such technology.
“We are an enabling service and an application service that packages technology like Qualcomm’s into a unified system. We start where Qualcomm ends”, Bogatin explains.
With Qualcomm’s technology on board, Bogatin hopes NearVerse will be able to provide the proximity service of choice for the general public: “We’d like to see LoKast become your answer to proximity interaction, just like SMS is your answer to distant, one-on-one interaction.”
That’s no small goal, as there are many other companies in the space — like Bump and Knocking Live, for example — doing similar things. Still, having a major player on your team is a clear advantage. Also, Bogatin says, LoKast is in the process of transforming itself from being solely a media sharing app to being a full-fledged instant social networking solution.
The LoKast app is available for Apple’s iOS and Google’s Android, but NearVerse is running AllJoyn on the Android version for now. NearVerse will have a live demo of the technology at the Mobile World Congress; the event also marks the first time Qualcomm’s AllJoyn will be seen out of the lab.
[Photo credit: Yandle]