Is it just me, or did Apple do EVERYTHING right with the iPhone SDK?

iphone_map.png

I don’t often GUSH about Apple. I try not to, at least. Most of the time I try to take a critical look at things and try to figure out what’s wrong with them before what’s right about them. Perhaps I’m just naturally negative – but stilling here 12 or so hours after the fact, I can’t help but be ecstatic about yesterday’s Roadmap event.

Apple if fine with VoIP, Apple is fine with free apps, Apple is fine with just about anything as long as its legal – Apple is being very cool about what it’s going to allow on the iPhone.

Developers have to be going insane – I can’t wait to see what people come up with. There will be some truly amazing stuff on the iPhone, there’s no doubt about it – but yesterday’s announcement took the iPhone and iPod Touch to a completely new level.

Before they were a great phone, and a great media player – now…now they’re something completely different.

I’m not even sure what to call it – but we’ve NEVER seen applications like we’re going to see on the iPhone/iPod Touch before. These things are two steps away from being Star Trek PADDS.

I can’t find anything to complain about here. I can’t find anything that I think was a bad move…the only thing that I can even come close to griping about is having to wait until JUNE!

I’m fanboy levels of excited – and I don’t get that way often.

How about you? Do you think this was a great move, or do you have reservations? Sound off in the comments below.

Comments

  1. Paul Richardson says:

    I am going to have to agree with you. It seems that Apple has now set yet another new standard for mobile phone makers to follow. Though the only downside I see is that they are targeting Exchange only. The company that I work for has an large Groupwise installation. I know of other companies that have extensive Lotus installations and so forth. I would really like to see more integration with these systems so I can stop carrying an iPhone and BlackBerry. All in all though I was blown away with what they released. It was much more than I was expecting.

  2. Rick O'Neil says:

    After seeing just a “hint” of what’s going to be possible in the keynote… I think it’s going to be awesome. I can’t wait!

    Can you even call the iPhone a “phone” anymore?… it’s more of a computer that you can also make calls on.

  3. Not everyone thinks Apple did it right – or, well, 100% right. Not VoIP using cellular networks and no SIM unlock are examples. Other concerns are how the apps must behave on the iPhone. TechCrunch did a decent review of the user agreements and outlined how the apps can or can’t work when not in use (according to TC, they have to shut down) and that could affect the full suite of apps we see on the phone.

    While I don’t agree that iPhone devs will have “serious problems” with the SDKs user agreement, it will make it harder for devs to realize a concept on the iPhone – especially if it needs to get around some of those restrictions.

    That said, I think most devs welcome the chance at creating “legitimate” iPhone apps that will target a larger un-jailbroken users. I’m also confident that someone smarter than I will come up with a new way to work with Apple’s restrictions and not against them.

  4. It’s awesome. Apple nailed it. I’m exited. I downloaded the SDK last night and I am oficially taking the plunge into the work of OS X software development. (I think I’ll have to buy a book or two.)

    Anyway, I can’t wait to see what time brings. I am confused a little about the whole $99 fee thing. I’ll have to look into that a little more. I’m Joe Blow, if I write an app, it will be a free widget of some kind. Do I have to pay $99 to get it into the App Store, or is that only for companies that are charging a price?

  5. If Super Monkey Ball and Spore are just the beginning of iPhone/iPod Touch games… I can’t wait to see what comes out next year. It’s pretty neat how they use the accelerometer for controlling the games… genius.

  6. @Krye,
    You will still have to pay, but $100 is as low as the student version of the Apple Developer Connection. That makes it a great deal.

    @All
    The part that I can’t figure out is if you can put your own apps easily on your own iPhone. It seems like this would be critical for testing, but would also be nice for folks who know that only a few people would need their app (ie. scientists, educators). The ability to do that could also build an open-source community that is not possible in any other way on this thing.

  7. The only thing I want to know is if Apple would allow applications that aren’t illegal in any way but could interfere with there business strategy. Take a application that adds DivX/Xvid playback. You could argue this can cost Apple money because they want you to buy movies and TV shows trough iTunes. But it would save me the haste of re-encoding a lot of video files. Ore applications that let you access the Amazon music store (that one is a stretch) but I’m very curious about a DivX/Xvid player.

  8. Michael says:

    @Bart

    I think they sort of answered that when theyvsaid they would be fine with VoIP and AIM on the iPhone.

    People argued up until the event yesterday that Apple would not allow a naitve chat app because it would hurt txt message sales. Same with VoIP and used minutes…and both are welcome on the phone.

  9. What???

    And open source software?
    And $99 fee for the software program?
    Voip??? Just over Wifi!!
    And the iPod Touch Software Update costs?

    Ok, this SDK will open up the mobile market with new fresh applications…

    And the 3G iPhone?? Exclusive Networks?? And the other countries, like Portugal??

    Naaa…Apple have to work a little harder…

  10. @Michael
    VoIP is only allowed over WiFi so Apple isn’t loosing money over that. But do you think an application that lets people access/buy content or services that Apple also sells is allowed? Access to a 3rd party music store or a way to play Xvid movies?

  11. @Phil

    And open source software?

    Is there anything that says you can’t make your development project open source? Is there something that restricts you from letting people look at your code when you develop it? I understand that Jobs said this platform isn’t designed for open cross platform standards, but is there no way for you to make an application and show others the code, and allow them to develop it? All I’ve heard is that Apple will need to approve it before it goes into the wild. I don’t see why you couldn’t develop an open source app using the iPhone SDK and submit it to Apple like any other application. Correct me on this if I’m wrong.

    And $99 fee for the software program?

    $99 is NOT a fee for the software program. The SDK is FREE. You can go download it now and develop your brains out! There is a one time $99 registration fee to be a developer which is the same thing Apple has charged in the dev center FOR YEARS.

    Voip??? Just over Wifi!!

    Yes, VoIP just over WiFi. You guys do understand that AT&T has some say on how their network is used, right? ALL cellphone carriers do, and unless they’re charging for it, they will never allow VoIP over their networks – that is not Apple’s call and you know it.

    And the iPod Touch Software Update costs?

    There is a very legitimate and unavoidable reason for it that has been discussed in detail right here: http://www.applegazette.com/macbook/apple-gazette-daily-207-follow-ups-from-last-weeks-shows/

    A CPA and Auditor wrote into the podcast explaining EXACTLY why they have to charge for that.

    Ok, this SDK will open up the mobile market with new fresh applications…

    agreed.

    And the 3G iPhone??

    Coming in June.

    Exclusive Networks??

    I’ll grant you that one – but I do have to say, that I get a much better deal on my AT&T service with the iPhone than I did when I was just a regular AT&T customer. I think that is one of the only benefits of the exclusivity.

    And the other countries, like Portugal??

    Grab an iPod Touch, I’m sure the iPhone will get there eventually – but I can understand the frustration of having to read about it all the time and not have one yourself.

    @Bart

    I disagree. I don’t know about you, but I don’t have a traditional home phone anymore. I have an iPhone. I use it from my house to make calls all the time – and now, once a VoIP app is created I could do the majority of my calls over VoIP, and not pay for as many minutes each month.

    Apple has seemed very open to this – I don’t see any reason why you won’t be able to play Xvid movies on the iPhone once an application has been developed for it – if they DON’T allow it you can bet I’ll be ranting about what a stupid, short sited move it is to block it.

    And I can’t really see Amazon making an app for their store, simply because they’d have to integrate it into a separate audio player on the iPhone – but if they could figure out a way to make it work, I think Apple would HAVE to do it – or they’d be looking at some serious inquiries over Monopolizing the platform.

  12. @Bart
    To make VoIP calls you must always be in range of an WiFi access point but if that’s the case you’re good to go. Why don’t use the same VoIP number on your land line and your mobile. If somebody calls that number both phones will ring.
    I life in the Netherlands and delibertly do not have an iPhone yet. It’s easy to come by here although it’s not official. I’m waiting for the 3G version. Only one provider here had the old EDGE network but shut it down in june 2007. All the major networks only offer HSDPA and don’t offer (and never did) EDGE. So if I had an iPhone I could only use the GPRS data connection and that’s a little to slow for me.
    I think the iPhone is a wonderful phone with is got even better with the SDK and I want one but it’s insane the iPhone doesn’t have 3G. I only have 3G here! I don’t care about the battery if it last a day it’s fine by me. So I’ll just wait till June…

  13. @Michael
    To make VoIP calls you must always be in range of an WiFi access point but if that’s the case you’re good to go. Why don’t use the same VoIP number on your land line and your mobile. If somebody calls that number both phones will ring.
    I life in the Netherlands and delibertly do not have an iPhone yet. It’s easy to come by here although it’s not official. I’m waiting for the 3G version. Only one provider here had the old EDGE network but shut it down in june 2007. All the major networks only offer HSDPA and don’t offer (and never did) EDGE. So if I had an iPhone I could only use the GPRS data connection and that’s a little to slow for me.
    I think the iPhone is a wonderful phone with is got even better with the SDK and I want one but it’s insane the iPhone doesn’t have 3G. I only have 3G here! I don’t care about the battery if it last a day it’s fine by me. So I’ll just wait till June…

  14. Shongololo says:

    When you think about the opportunity that the iPhone SDK, enterprise features, and built in distribution channel directly to the customer’s iPhones bring to developers, it is mind blowing. I decided right away to get the SDK! Apparently a horde of other people came to the same conclusion, because last night the iPhone SDK web site was completely swamped.

  15. The only one thing that Apple didn’t get right is that we have to wait until June to play with these applications… and I guess I would have rather Apple been okay with P2P apps and VoIP on the cellular network, but I guess I can deal with it.

  16. Bill Henderson says:

    With all this cool stuff coming, is 3G coming also? Does anyone have concrete info on this?

  17. Yes, I’m very excited about the SDK, as I posted on my own little blog. The iPhone is now about to become more than a great phone; more than a great media player – it’s now about to become a first-class hand held gaming device as good, if not better, than any Sony or Nintendo unit! Like the Wii, as a gaming unit it has a more natural and less cumbersome interface – no more buttons, toggle switches, joysticks, mice, etc. Just move the iPhone in natural moves and presto, instant control of the game and instant gratisfaction!

    As Go Moblile recently stated, “It’s all over but the crying!” Yes, Apple has won, delivering what Microsoft, Intel and Sony have failed to do with their pen-based devices.

    Just as Windows 95 started an avalanche of developers working on Windows, so too, will the SDK roadmap do the same for the iPhone. I just hate to be in the boardrooms of RIM, Nokia, Samsung, Motorola now, however, because there has got to be a lot of crying, if not down-right cussing going on!

  18. @Justin

    I saw something on the iPhone dev center that Apple won’t allow apps that circumvent the App store.

  19. Only downsides I see right now is the fact that 3rd party apps can’t run in the background. Which is going to butcher any IM client.

    However you stating the iPhone is going to get crazy now is a lie. Anyone who has jailbroken their iPhone/iPod knows this. There are so many amazing applications already, and thankfully their will always be a jailbreak because everything Apple won’t do, with jailbreak you will be able to do.

  20. Michael says:

    @Steve

    A Lie? Are you seriously calling me a liar over what is about to happen with the iPhone? Really?

    Let me explain something to you about the “jailbroken” iPhones. It’s hackery. It’s homebrew crap. Are some impressive things being done with it? Sure…but major, serious, professional developers are not going to develop for a “jailbroken” iPhone. It’s not going to happen.

    Major companies are developing for the iPhone now. Things are about to open up in a way that has never, and will never be possible through jailbreaking anything.

  21. I think Phil is smoking crack if he thinks ANY cellular provider will allow VOIP over cellular. Seriously, wtf are you smoking?

    Again, the reason why Apple is successful now is because they aren’t following boneheaded decisions like Phil’s. I really think that some people shouldn’t be allowed to post on the internet.

  22. Also, jailbreaking is about to slow down. Why the heck would you make a free iPhone app that might get lost on an update when you can get PAID to make OFFICIAL apps on it.

    All your base officially are belong to the iPhone. Welcome to the future.

  23. The ONLY thing I don’t understand – WHY Apple is so slow bringing iPhone (and iTunes, official Mac etc.) to new countries? Millions and millions of people would absolutely love to use Apple equipment, have iPhones and so on. I can just imagine what will happen, when people realize the significance of this SDK (3rd party apps that it will bring) and what the iPhone/iPodTouch really is meant to become (much more than just a phone or media player).

    Apple has this huge momentum now. And they have huge pile of cash. SO WHY THEY ARE SO SLOW TO EXPAND INTERNATIONALLY??? PEOPLE ACROSS THE GLOBE WANT THEIR PRODUCTS!!! THIS IS THE RIGHT MOMENT FOR APPLE TO

    International reality – It’s totally frustrating! I live in Latvia – small EU country with no iTunes store (the only way to get iTunes working, we have register with fake US address and buy iTunes gift card codes through eBay – AND PLEASE NOTE! – this HAS to be done, for example, to get a paid iPod Touch update…), no official Apple presence here, no iPhone, no support, no language tools… (yet in the same time – Microsoft many years has Windows and Office in Latvian language…).
    And get this – I see people with iPhones everywhere and there are more and more Mac laptops and iMacs around… In Latvia almost all creative agencies use Macs, but now I start to see them in previously absolutely unimaginable places! Of course, Windows PC’s still are the total dominator, but nowadays It seems that every other person I speak with considers switching to Mac… APPLE! PLEASE USE THE MOMENTUM AND SUPPORT INTERNATIONAL CUSTOMERS!!!

  24. well not everything… iPod Touch users said that they need to pay for the upcoming firmware upgrade which includes App Store. Hopefully’ I’m wrong but thats what I read in Engadget.

Speak Your Mind

*