Wednesday, March 12, 2008

iRoadmap 2.0

Unless you were under a rock - you know that last week Apple unveiled its roadmap for the iPhone. Steve and the crew talked about the new iPhone 2.0 software and its new "Enterprise" capability to synch with Exchange Server, ability to be wiped and secured remotely, etc.

Oh yeah, and something about a SDK for 3rd parties.

They trotted some Apple geeks out, as well as some non-Apple types that had never developed for the Apple platform and showed some really cool native games (no joysticks, just moving the phone interacted with the game!), a boring "integration" thingie, and another boring "Hello World" example.

Did I mention the cool games?

They also did a walk-through on how "easy" it will be to develop applications... in JUNE... when they ship the SDK that was promised for February. Oh yeah, and if you don't happen to have a Mac - "No soup for you!"

Yeah, their dev environment (and iPhone emulator) will only work on a Mac. OK, I get the fact that Steve wants to sell some more Macs, and I get the fact that the internal guys developed the iPhone software on PCs - I mean, Macs.

But no Windows emulator? No way for Linux geeks to get their hack on?

This is extremely short-sighted of them (again). Just when it looked like Apple had the opportunity to really become a force in anything but iPods, they slam the door shut and pull a Microsoft.

They started off so well. iTunes for Windows ("Hell Freezes Over"), going with Intel-based hardware, having the ability to synch to Exchange, coming up with the iPhone (although it needs some more "standard" features before I'll buy one)... now to pull back and make the SDK Mac-only - and have the programming language be Xcode?

Riiiiiiiight. Good move, Steve.

Oh don't worry, all those Android-based phones coming out in June? The ones based on Linux and the one that allow you to program in real languages? The ones that have a cool touch screen, camera, integrated software keyboard, expandable memory, a battery you can change, GPS, 3G out of the box?

Yeah, THOSE Android phones. I think they're going to be the phones "for the rest of us"...

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