Archive for the ‘apple’ Category

The End of the iPhone Era

July 28, 2009

I can’t believe I fell for it.

Before I bought my iPhone, I considered the purchase long and hard. I knew full well what I was getting myself into. I could choose the iPhone and commit my soul to AT&T and Apple’s controlling nature for the next two years. “But the iPhone is so awesome!” I thought. It has a big touch screen, it has apps for everything including Facebook and YouTube. You can check your email, watch movies, listen to music, and browse the ‘real’ web.
I specifically remember telling myself, “Sure, Apple might reject apps and might be evil, but I want to give them the benefit of the doubt. I want to give them a chance. Maybe they won’t be evil.”
Up until now, everything was fine.
And then yesterday happened. Apple and AT&T denied the Google Voice app from the iPhone App Store.
I won’t get into the details about Google Voice or why it was denied entry. Sure, I can live without a native iPhone app for Google Voice. I guarantee that Google develops a nice web app for iPhone users as a consolation.
The point is, the app was perfectly legitimate. It was created using Apple’s own SDK. It doesn’t do anything that cannot be done already from google.com/voice (the app just made it easier and faster to use the service). But the overly-controlling Apple and AT&T rejected it. The most likely reason behind the rejection is that AT&T was afraid that Google Voice would steal some precious revenue from its (overpriced) SMS packages.
This is why openness will win the end–when you piss off your loyal fanbase, they turn on you forever. I will never buy an Apple product ever again. When my AT&T contract is over, I will immediately switch to a new carrier, and never give a single cent to AT&T again. When my friends come to me and ask me about my experience with either company, I will do my best to steer them clear of both Apple and AT&T. Apple and AT&T are evil.
It’s over. It was fun while it lasted.
PS: I think this Android phone is going to be my next phone:

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Why Safari On The iPhone Is Awesome

June 13, 2007

For a quick recap: Last Monday (June 11th) at WWDC 2007 (Worldwide Developer’s Conference), Apple announced that the iPhone will not have an SDK (Software Development Kit). This means that developers will not be able to write software that runs natively on the iPhone.

Apple announced that instead of an SDK, they’ve brought Safari to the iPhone. Safari is a Mac Web Browser (recently Safari was released for Windows). This means that developers WILL be able to write software that runs in a browser, that will in turn run on the iPhone.

This announcement was met with a plethora of boos, like this post from Gizmodo:
Fast And Furious: No iPhone SDK Means No Killer iPhone Apps

The Digg article referencing that Gizmodo post has several comments expressing the Digg crowd’s sentiment:

“Thank you Mr. Steve Jobs for helping me make my decision to buy a PS3.” [link]

“That ‘SDK’ for the iPhone is a slap in the face to developers.” [link]

[Steve Jobs] showed a lot of disrespect to all those people who came out there hoping to hear something exciting they could work on. He basically told a bunch developers waiting to build great apps to go build a html page. [link]

Steve Jobs should have listened to Ballmer. “DEVELOPERS! DEVELOPERS! DEVELOPERS!” [link]

It’s clear that many people were expecting Apple to release an SDK like Microsoft does for the Windows Mobile platform.

Months ago, when I first heard that Apple would not release an SDK, I agreed with these quotes. I thought the iPhone would be a joke, that it would flop, and that it would be undeserving of being called a “smartphone.”

But after learning that the iPhone’s Safari will be able to run full-fledged Ajax applications, I’ve completely changed my mind.

Honestly, why is it such a bad move on Apple’s part? As a developer, I am much more willing to write a web application, which I have been doing for a living for the past two years, than learn another programming language so I can write applications that run ONLY on the iPhone. If you are a developer, which would you rather do? Perhaps Steve Jobs is thinking about “developers developers developers.”

Software can be written right now that would run on the iPhone at release. Dozens of existing web applications will run on the iPhone at release.

My only gripe with Apple’s decision here is this: I’ve always been reluctant to purchase a mobile data plan (they’re too expensive). If all my apps must be web apps, and I don’t have access to the web, it would seem that I’d be completely unable to run anything. So I’d be forced into a data plan.

But wait.

Didn’t Google JUST release a product that helps take web applications offline? Yes, Google Gears promises to do just that. Currently, Google Gears is available for Firefox and Internet Explorer. But if you look at the fine print:


You can see that Safari support is coming soon. 🙂

With Google Gears, it will be much easier to develop web applications that don’t require a constant internet connection. I think this will be an awesome partnership that helps broaden the possibilities for mobile applications (at least for those of us who might be without an unlimited data plan).

Just one example is Google Reader. I’ve always wanted to be able to use Google Reader on my mobile phone while offline. Then after reading some of my feeds, to be able to sync back up, marking as read the feeds I’d seen, starring the feeds I’d starred, and keeping unread the feeds I hadn’t yet seen.

With iPhone Safari + Google Gears, things like this don’t seem too far off.

Google + Apple + AT&T

May 23, 2007

The official Google Blog today has a story about a new phone from Cingular, the BlackBerry 8800. This phone has GPS, so when using Google Maps for Mobile, the map automatically centers around your current location, with a blue flashing dot “exactly where you are!”

That’s all really exciting, but does anyone else find it weird that The Official Google Blog is basically running an advertisement for Cingular (AT&T) that screams “Switch to Cingular!”

And what about Apple’s iPhone being available only for Cingular customers? Probably more blatant than Google, Apple is screaming, “Switch to Cingular!”

To me it’s awfully mysterious that these guys are pushing consumers to switch to a specific carrier. Do Google and/or Apple have any kind of partnership with Cingular?

Maybe it’s just that Cingular is the carrier that’s pushing the hardest to make these kinds of partnerships. Whatever the case, other carriers (T-Mobile, I’m looking at you) need to step it up or they’ll start seeing mass exodus.