nullstream weblog - iPhone Round Up

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iPhone Round Up


June 4, 2007 10:57 PM PST


After initially indicating that the iPhone would be closed to third party developers, it seems that third parties might actually be able to write applications for it after all. I'm guessing that with such a new product for Apple, they might have wanted to make sure that the shipping version worked fine before opening it up. Google Desktop did something like this: no plug-ins to plug-ins using only C++ / ATL to Javascript / HTML widgets to a visual plug-in editor. Walk before you run, especially when doing something new.

I'm willing to give Apple the benefit of the doubt for now, but I'd be very disappointed if I couldn't write applications for it (though I'd still buy one). If they do release an iPhone SDK, that'll be the end of Windows CE. They could even make the SDK run only with Xcode and Mac OS X, so iPhone developers would have to buy Macs...

Note, in the left image above, that there seems to be one application missing... what could the fabled 12th app be?

Also, new iPhone ads.

Comments (31)
John, June 5, 2007 08:43 AM:

I don't think an SDK alone will enough to completely supplant any existing smartphone OS, at least not as long as the iPhone only works with a single carrier and doesn't support 3G.

So I wonder if the apps will be sold through iTunes or some new store brand. Chances are they will have to rename iTunes soon anyway. 'Tunes' no longer represents what is is offered much like Apple Computer no longer describes Apple.

The new ads are nice. Much better than, "Hi I'm an iPhone.. and I'm a Smartphone."

Paul, June 5, 2007 03:00 PM:

I should have been more clear that Windows CE third party devs will likely go away over time (migrating to iPhone development) if there is an iPhone SDK. Why would you want to do CE development (along with the crappy toolset like ActiveSync) when there is something much cooler and is in such demand?

John, June 5, 2007 05:53 PM:

And they wouldn't have to deal with the messy hodge podge of carriers each with their own rules / branding / locked phones etc.

It will be interesting to see what the upper tier data / phone market looks like in 18 months. MS and Apple certainly aren't the only players here.

Paul, June 5, 2007 06:03 PM:

Here is another good article on the subject.

John, June 6, 2007 01:40 AM:

That sounds a lot like Microsoft's mid 90s strategy of turning the thousands of Windows programmers into mobile device programmers with CE. After all it has 'the same' API. We'll have to wait until the SDK is out to see how much of OSX is actually in the iPhone, and what type of trade-offs were made.

John, June 7, 2007 10:36 AM:

Would it kill them to put a memory slot on that thing, and also make the battery removable / replaceable?

Paul, June 7, 2007 11:28 AM:

Yes, it probably would kill them. Here's an article on why (read the section near the end about the iPod).

John, June 7, 2007 12:28 PM:

I don't buy the argument.

I think a phone is different from an iPod. People depend on their phone. A good percentage of 'fancy' phone users have a second battery for use when they are away from a plug for extended times.

If anyone could make a battery cover look nice, it would be Apple. To follow the argument in the article, one would have to ask why the slick smooth macBook has a removable battery.

Paul, June 7, 2007 12:40 PM:

Mac Books have the battery cover because you don't hold the laptop bottom in your hand, they way you do with the iPod and iPhone. If there were covers on the iPod, it certainly would feel less seamless and that contributes to the overall impression of the product in a way that is hard to quantify.

Apple doesn't seem to mind excluding many types of users in their usage scenarios: I'm sure that there are an entire class of people that absolutely want FM radio on their music device, so they don't go iPod (and that hasn't hurt Apple's sales). I don't see to many people carrying multiple batteries, given the amount of random mail at work with the subject line "Anyone have a Nokia XYZ charger..."? Those people can buy extra chargers, or use a different phone.

John, June 7, 2007 01:16 PM:

Good points.

I have to remind myself that one of Job's strengths is his ability to say 'no'. No to kitchen sink features and scenarios, no to un-profitable market sectors, no to mainstream thinking, and no to products that don't meet his exacting aesthetic and usability standards.

Of course another one of his strengths is his ability to later do things he previously said 'no' to. :)

George, June 9, 2007 07:14 AM:

I would have preferred to see an end user replaceable battery. But the need for a second/backup battery - not even on the top 20 features for most users I bet. Carrying/charging a second battery is a hassle. I only know one person who has a second battery for their smartphone.

I'm curious to see how the sim card is hidden. Every phone I've seen the sim card is behind the battery. I always assumed that was so that the sim card could only be changed while the device was off. I guess there'll be some sort of power off/card unlock switch behind a nice cover on the an edge of the devices. Hopefully they'll hide a reset button behind the cover too.

As far a the 12th app, I'm sure youtube would be the safe bet.

Paul, June 9, 2007 11:49 AM:

I think the 12th app will be LOLCats.

Paul, June 9, 2007 11:05 PM:

iPhone download benchmarks.

Paul, June 11, 2007 11:37 AM:

So it looks like there will be some developer options, using widget-like web-distributed Ajax things. The interesting thing about that is that the bar gets dramatically lowered so that people who aren't objective-c coders can build useful applications.

John, June 11, 2007 11:37 AM:

iPhone dev model announced... Web 2.0 apps (no SDK, just use the web). He he, not exactly what I was expecting.

John, June 14, 2007 03:56 PM:

Iphone's wifi to be locked unless you sign up for a data plan?

John, June 17, 2007 10:24 PM:

19 Million US consumers want to buy an iPhone according to this survey.

Paul, June 19, 2007 10:38 PM:

Introducing the iPhone shuffle.

John, June 20, 2007 11:44 AM:

Nice, just press the button and you will be randomly connected to a number in your address book.

John, June 26, 2007 09:49 AM:

Rate plans are out. I will say I'm disappointed. I hoped Apple would 'think different' here and 're-invent' the phone plan, not just the phone. But alas, more of the same. The plan(s) look like any other phone plan to me. Limited minutes, limited SMS messages etc. All plans have unlimited data however which makes sense.

Paul, June 26, 2007 11:06 AM:

My current plan looks like the first one, and I use SMS for shuttle alerts and calendar reminders. I come no where near using up the minutes and and SMS limit, but the unlimited data will be awesome, especially with maps, email and web.

J, June 26, 2007 11:20 AM:

Wow - those are higher than predicted by other rumors. How have they still convinced people that SMS messages aren't "data"? I mean, unlimited emails, but those 160 character SMS messages - whoo! I'll be interested to know whether the Wi-Fi will work without buying a data plan, but I guess you have to have a data plan anyway. That's going to be a huge moneymaker - no phone discount and you sign up for a rate plan!

J, June 26, 2007 11:22 AM:

I didn't catch the fine print. 2 year plan to even use the iPod feature. Ouch. I heard a rumor that you can't use iPod songs as ringtones either. Oh well, at least you can purchase more SMS messages - LOL:

*More SMS text messages can be added to any plan.

Minimum new 2-year wireless service plan and activation fee required to activate iPhone features, including iPod; plans are subject to AT&T credit approval.

Paul, June 26, 2007 04:15 PM:

A real review!

George, June 26, 2007 11:55 PM:

The big surprise in the reviews I've read today is the ability to connect to Exchange for email. Not a lot of details but there are rumors that Apple has licensed Exchange active sync for the iPhone.

About the rate plans, I agree nothing earth shattering from a cost standpoint, except that there is no "Apple Tax" applied to the prevailing plan costs. The "at home" activation is interesting and might turn out to be popular with everyone but cell phone salespeople.

J, June 27, 2007 05:18 PM:

Seems that the rumor of $0.99 per ringtone is true. I haven't seen it confirmed that you have to pay an additional 0.99 on songs you already own to "convert" them, but it seems that's the general consensus. Blah.

Johh, June 29, 2007 08:02 PM:

please make the unboxing videos stop!

J, June 29, 2007 09:38 PM:

Paul - they still have some at the SF and NY stores. You have?

Paul, June 29, 2007 09:45 PM:

I'm going to look tomorrow... I'll get one if they have them (although by that time it's unlikely). I'd actually like to wait a few days to see what people think. Plus, you know all about Apple's "rev 1" hardware...

Paul, June 29, 2007 11:18 PM:

So, then I realized that the stores were open until midnight so I went done and bought the 8 GB version. Review to follow...

John, July 1, 2007 08:29 AM:

So where is the review? We are all just sitting around dying to know.

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