updated 11:50 am EDT, Tue March 20, 2012
Sprint to launch DirectConnect Now app next month
Sprint will soon launch an Android app that will bring all the features of its DirectConnect push-to-talk service to handsets without the need for specialized hardware. The information came from a leaked internal Sprint document shared by PhoneNews. Called Sprint DirectConnect Now, the app should also bring the long-awaited Push-to-X feature that never came out the hardware platform.
The first device to get the app should be the Samsung Transform Ultra, expected to come out at Boost Mobile in April. The same device will get International DirectConnect service over CDMA. The app will come to other handsets in the future, though these haven't yet been revealed. How the service will be priced and marketed, and what the app will cost, if anything, also remains to be seen.
The app will replace a dedicated hardware button with a virtual one, and users will see a pre-selected image of the person they're chatting with on the screen.
The Sprint app will now compete with QChat, a PTT platform developed by Qualcomm, which uses VoIP tech over 3G networks.