AT&T May Create a New Charge for Mobile App Developers

The Wall Street Journal is reporting Tuesday that AT&T is working on a new service that would effectively create a new revenue stream for the carrier and a new bill for mobile app developers.

According to the WSJ, such a service would rope in developers to pay the wireless carrier for some of the data used by app consumers.

Here’s how the venerable financial publication describes the potential service and its benefits: “a customer nearing his data limit for the month could be more likely to download a movie if the content provider covered the price of the data transmission.”

John Donovan, the executive responsible for AT&T’s network and technology, says the service would be similar to “toll-free calling for the mobile-broadband world.”

“A feature that we’re hoping to have out sometime next year is the equivalent of 800 numbers that would say, if you take this app, this app will come without any network usage,” Donovan reportedly said this week at the Mobile World Congress in Barcelona, Spain.

If you’re a developer, do you like this idea? Or is AT&T putting another cost on you that shouldn’t be the responsibility of the developer to pay? Please weigh in with a thought or comment below.