Sprint (NYSE: S) is partnering with GetJar, an independent Lithuania-based application store, to offer thousands of free applications on a variety of its handsets. Release.
The partnership with Sprint marks GetJar’s highest profile agreement in the the U.S. to date, however, the relatively under-the-radar company has signed up others worldwide with Carphone Warehouse, Sony (NYSE: SNE) Ericsson (NSDQ: ERIC) and Virgin Mobile (NYSE: VM) France.
All of GetJar’s 60,000 applications are free, so typically, GetJar’s revenues come from developers and content owners that pay for better placement in the storefront. Most carriers have hesitated to open up their storefronts to free apps because it’s hard to make money from them. In the case of Sony Ericsson, GetJar must share any revenue it receives from downloads that are generated on a Sony Ericsson handset. If Sprint has a similar arrangement, the deal is a no-brainier…it doesn’t spend many resources on managing the applications, but still receives a cut.
Sprint said the apps will be available on feature phones, including the LG (SEO: 066570) Lotus Elite, the Samsung Reclaim and the Sanyo 2700, and smartphones running BlackBerry and Windows Mobile. For those phones, a link is already accessible to GetJar on Sprint’s portal. “Our partnership with GetJar means that all Sprint customers will now have access to thousands of applications ranging from popular apps such as YouTube and Google (NSDQ: GOOG) Maps to more niche applications that address their business needs,” said Len Barlik, Sprint’s VP of wireless and wireline services.