Sprint is in the process of releasing a software-only push-to-talk option for its Android customer base. Direct Connect Now will be a downloadable Android app that will give folks access to Sprint’s CDMA-class Direct Connect network. It will also operate on the iDEN-class push-to-talk network. It will have touchscreen controls and it will allow you to have up to 20 conversations with people at one time. While initially it will only be available on the SamsungTransform Ultra, the app will be available to more non-embedded devices later on according to an internal Sprint web site.
Up until this point it special hardware was needed to connect and this app signifies a breaking away from that. Considering the iDEN 2G network that Sprint got from Nextel in their merger, and up until this point, the Direct Connect CDMA-network needed special hardware (The Admiral by Motorola for instance) to operate push-to-talk this is very big news indeed. We should see more Android devices get push-to-talk capabilities now that Direct Connect relies solely on software on the Android Platform. Here’s hoping!