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Apple to launch official iPhone Web applications directory

post #1 of 55
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Apple as early as Wednesday is expected to launch as part of its website a directory of official Web 2.0-based iPhone applications, AppleInsider has been told.

One developer familiar with the matter, who asked to remain anonymous, said Apple representatives have been tracking down authors of Web-based iPhone apps and asking them to submit official screenshots, icons, web addresses and descriptions of their applications to the company.

The submission processes is said to be very similar to that required of developers who submit their Dashboard widgets to Apple's official Dashboard downloads directory. In an effort to keep the initiative hush-hush, Apple has also reportedly 'sworn' these developers 'to secrecy.'

This latest move by the Cupertino-based company suggests that -- at least for the time being -- it is sticking to its guns regarding third party application development for its touch-screen handset -- mainly that it discourages native application development in favor of Web-based applications that do not pose a threat to the stability of the iPhone operating system in general.

The move also appears to fall in line with recent claims by ArsTechnica, which last week cited sources in saying that Apple was working on solutions that will help developers gain more exposure for their Web-based iPhone apps, but presently holds no plans to issue a "true" software developers kit (SDK) that would allow for native third-party application development.

While the report suggested that Web app developers might eventually be able to create iPhone home screen icons that will point to their offline web apps, Apple could presumably also include a new home screen icon as part of a future iPhone software update that would jump users to its official directory of online applications.
post #2 of 55
WebApps are definitively not a solution for us in europe where internet access on the iPhone won't be unlimited.
post #3 of 55
Far out, bring it on. I want to start developing an iPhone web app of my own now! Hmm...
post #4 of 55
this web based app only stance from apple is truly insulting. like 'a real app is muuuuch to dangerous for you peopel...' > pathetic
post #5 of 55
Quote:
Originally Posted by palex9 View Post

this web based app only stance from apple is truly insulting. like 'a real app is muuuuch to dangerous for you peopel...' > pathetic

Complaining about iPhone's lack of support for native apps is really getting tiring. From the very first moment that Apple unveiled the iPhone, they described it as 3 things:
1) a phone
2) an iPod
3) an Internet Communicator

Nowhere have they said that it's a PDA or general-purpose computing platform. Sure, it would be nice if native apps were supported out of the gate, but most people really don't have a clue just how complex that device is. Apple will support native apps when they are in a position to do so.

Would you have preferred they waited until native app support was available? We wouldn't have the iPhone today.
post #6 of 55
Quote:
Originally Posted by coolfactor View Post

Complaining about iPhone's lack of support for native apps is really getting tiring. From the very first moment that Apple unveiled the iPhone, they described it as 3 things:
1) a phone
2) an iPod
3) an Internet Communicator

Nowhere have they said that it's a PDA or general-purpose computing platform. Sure, it would be nice if native apps were supported out of the gate, but most people really don't have a clue just how complex that device is. Apple will support native apps when they are in a position to do so.

Would you have preferred they waited until native app support was available? We wouldn't have the iPhone today.

Very well said.
post #7 of 55
@ coolfactor : Jobs in january promised desktop class application developpement.
post #8 of 55
Here's the phone people are wanting:

Quote:
A truly open Linux phone with GPS debuts

The OpenMoko is meant to be a fully mobile Linux machine that happens to look like a phone. The point is simple, where others have a Linux kernel with a locked proprietary stack on top of it, this one is open, top to bottom. You can use your own tools on it, compile your own kernel. and bang on the bare metal if you are into that sort of thing. Everything barring a few small drivers is GPL'ed.

Have at it.

post #9 of 55
Web-based Apps, have to go through one application to get to another? Not tap-able straight from home screen?
SO Un-Apple. What is going on!
Lame.

In case you have been in a coma/enjoying a full and active family/social/work life, 3rd party apps do exist, just not with Apple's seal of approval. Some are really useful, most are really stable. No-one will be happy if Apple agree to open up native apps but charge for them- you can't take away what people have and charge them to give it back. Didn't Joni Mitchell say that?
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post #10 of 55
Quote:
Originally Posted by coolfactor View Post

Nowhere have they said that it's a PDA or general-purpose computing platform. Sure, it would be nice if native apps were supported out of the gate, but most people really don't have a clue just how complex that device is. Apple will support native apps when they are in a position to do so.

Would you have preferred they waited until native app support was available? We wouldn't have the iPhone today.

You should make some research before coming out with this crap that nobody in their right mind will believe in. It's also pretty insulting to any Mac developer...

The reason as to why Apple doesn't want you to be able to install native apps is pretty obvious: why do you want to make phone calls when you can use something like Skype...
post #11 of 55
i think things will change once leopard is out and about
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post #12 of 55
Quote:
Originally Posted by camimac View Post

You should make some research before coming out with this crap that nobody in their right mind will believe.

You'll notice I didn't say it wasn't _possible_ for the iPhone (or iPod touch) to support applications. There are hundreds available today. What I did say was (paraphrasing myself) "when Apple was in a _position_ to support them". There's a huge difference between _providing_ and _supporting_ such features on a device. Just think of all the training and technical resources needed at Apple's end.

This is not just a technical issue, but an infrastructure one. Check your own mind.
post #13 of 55
It's a definite. Just a matter of when. This is what showed up in my Mac OSX Downloads RSS feed this morning:



None of the links worked yet this morning. This was one of the links:

http://www.apple.com/webapps/games/s...foriphone.html
post #14 of 55
Quote:
Originally Posted by coolfactor View Post

You'll notice I didn't say it wasn't _possible_ for the iPhone (or iPod touch) to support applications. There are hundreds available today. What I did say was (paraphrasing myself) "when Apple was in a _position_ to support them". There's a huge difference between _providing_ and _supporting_ such features on a device. Just think of all the training and technical resources needed at Apple's end.

This is not just a technical issue, but an infrastructure one. Check your own mind.

you know what, do you really think apple doesnt have the manpower and capacity to develop and support alot more apps? for whatever reason jobs decided to put this on the back burner. but instead of coming out with a dev kit he prefers to find ways, almost witch hunt style, to go after anybody not 'obeying' his rules. btw, where are updates for the apple tv???? mine still forgets the password overnight (wireless setup) most of the time!
post #15 of 55
Quote:
Originally Posted by coolfactor View Post

You'll notice I didn't say it wasn't _possible_ for the iPhone (or iPod touch) to support applications. There are hundreds available today. What I did say was (paraphrasing myself) "when Apple was in a _position_ to support them". There's a huge difference between _providing_ and _supporting_ such features on a device. Just think of all the training and technical resources needed at Apple's end.

This is not just a technical issue, but an infrastructure one. Check your own mind.

Yeah, Apple will be in a position to do so once it receives all the money it can from the supposedly 30% share it receives from all the contracts and communications from iPhones. If you were able to install and run Skype as of tomorrow Apple would most likely lose such deals, as no company would then be crazy enough to give such a large share to Apple.
post #16 of 55
Quote:
Originally Posted by neckaros View Post

@ coolfactor : Jobs in january promised desktop class application developpement.

And he said exactly what?
post #17 of 55
Quote:
Originally Posted by Taskiss View Post

Here's the phone people are wanting:

Have at it.


Ugghh!
post #18 of 55
Quote:
Originally Posted by camimac View Post

You should make some research before coming out with this crap that nobody in their right mind will believe in. It's also pretty insulting to any Mac developer...

The reason as to why Apple doesn't want you to be able to install native apps is pretty obvious: why do you want to make phone calls when you can use something like Skype...

Other than the fact that Skype has been having some well publicized problems, Jobs did say that this is not a computer, but rather, a phone.

You don't have to agree, but it's his product, not yours.
post #19 of 55
Quote:
Originally Posted by coolfactor View Post

You'll notice I didn't say it wasn't _possible_ for the iPhone (or iPod touch) to support applications. There are hundreds available today. What I did say was (paraphrasing myself) "when Apple was in a _position_ to support them". There's a huge difference between _providing_ and _supporting_ such features on a device. Just think of all the training and technical resources needed at Apple's end.

This is not just a technical issue, but an infrastructure one. Check your own mind.

There aren't hundreds, there are a few dozen, mostly very minor.
post #20 of 55
Quote:
Originally Posted by melgross View Post

You don't have to agree, but it's his product, not yours.

Actually that's the problem with most of the things that Apple releases: it's like the products are made for Jobs, not the general public. That's a mistake that might cost them dearly in the future, as it did already in the past.
post #21 of 55
Quote:
Originally Posted by palex9 View Post

you know what, do you really think apple doesnt have the manpower and capacity to develop and support alot more apps? for whatever reason jobs decided to put this on the back burner. but instead of coming out with a dev kit he prefers to find ways, almost witch hunt style, to go after anybody not 'obeying' his rules. btw, where are updates for the apple tv???? mine still forgets the password overnight (wireless setup) most of the time!

Actually, I do think that. Apple is burning on all cylinders, running more efficiently than most tech companies in the world. They are turning out ground-breaking products (hardware and software) every few months. They are their own best competitors. Name one other tech company that continues to redefine their own products rather than just releasing lackluster mediocre upgrades.

Apple has clearly stated, in public, that AppleTV is a "hobby" right now. That's confirmation that they are working on it, but not devoting all of their resources to it.

I'd say they've been pretty busy with the iPhone, new iPods, new Macs, new OS X (and Server), new iLife, new iWork, new professional apps.

I don't think a minor inconvenience with your AppleTV somehow defines their overall efforts across all of their product lines. They aim for and achieve amazing execution better than most companies can even dream of. That stands on its own as a measure of their commitment to quality and your enjoyment of their products.
post #22 of 55
"In an effort to keep the initiative hush-hush, Apple has also reportedly 'sworn' these developers 'to secrecy'."

I believe that's known as signing a Non-Disclosure Agreement.

You make it sound like they made them pinky-promise.
post #23 of 55
Quote:
Originally Posted by melgross View Post

There aren't hundreds, there are a few dozen, mostly very minor.

Fair enough. There's probably hundreds in development, though. :-)
post #24 of 55
Quote:
Originally Posted by melgross View Post

Ugghh!

Yeah, that was my impression too. Fugly. Still, the promise everyone seems to want is there. Perhaps you can get it in a muddy brown color.
post #25 of 55
Quote:
Originally Posted by Taskiss View Post

Here's the phone people are wanting:

Have at it.


All I see is a series of slick photoshop (OK, ok... gimp?) mockups.

Has anyone had one of these in their hands yet?
post #26 of 55
Quote:
Originally Posted by jpellino View Post

All I see is a series of slick photoshop (OK, ok... gimp?) mockups.

Has anyone had one of these in their hands yet?

https://direct.openmoko.com/

You can buy something for $300.00 USD

Here's what it can and can't do at this time:
http://wiki.openmoko.org/wiki/Developer_preview
Quote:
What you can expect

* a functional bootloader with support for firmware upgrades
* a functional Linux kernel with basic drivers for the various hardware subsystems, with small bugs here and there
* a basic, simple linux distribution based on OpenEmbedded, that you have to install yourself as rootfs image using USB DFU
* all the source code that we have at this point in time, and the corresponding build system
* mailing lists

What you CAN NOT expect yet

* reliable means of making phone calls, esp. not from the UI
* reliable means of sending/receiving SMS, esp. not from the UI
* integrated GPRS data access
* bluetooth integration (basic bluez driver works)
* proper power management (i.e. no reasonable battery life yet)
* ringtone (or other) profile management
* network preferences (call deflection, manual operator selection, ...)
* a complete application framework where third party application developers can write apps that easily integrate with the OpenMoko world

Still, it's what people want...

Right?
post #27 of 55
Quote:
Originally Posted by camimac View Post

Actually that's the problem with most of the things that Apple releases: it's like the products are made for Jobs, not the general public. That's a mistake that might cost them dearly in the future, as it did already in the past.

Don't get me wrong, I disagree with a lot of what Jobs does. I think the phone should allow third party apps. It's one of the two reasons I haven't bought the phone yet, the other being 3G.

But, I know enough to understand that if a product doesn't do what you need, no matter how "cool" it is, you don't buy it. You don't buy it, and then complain that it doesn't do what you want it to. That's being foolish. It's why I have no sympathy for those who have bought it, and have done what Apple said not to do, and have had problems because of it.

Apple isn't the only company that does this, almost all companies do.

If you make an unauthorized modification to a product, and you "brick" it, or if an expected update does, hey, tough! Companies don't feel under any obligation to take care of it. After all, they told you not to do it.
post #28 of 55
Quote:
Originally Posted by coolfactor View Post

Fair enough. There's probably hundreds in development, though. :-)

No important company will make apps for the phone, or iTouch, if Apple won't support them. I don't blame them.

I still have hopes that Apple will support third party apps other than what they are doing now.
post #29 of 55
Quote:
Companies don't feel under any oblication to take care of it. After all, they told you not to do it.

Well said.

Lemon Bon Bon.

You know, for a company that specializes in the video-graphics market, you'd think that they would offer top-of-the-line GPUs...

 

WITH THE NEW MAC PRO THEY FINALLY DID!  (But you bend over for it.)

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You know, for a company that specializes in the video-graphics market, you'd think that they would offer top-of-the-line GPUs...

 

WITH THE NEW MAC PRO THEY FINALLY DID!  (But you bend over for it.)

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post #30 of 55
Apple should tell people to not put their iPhones in a bucket of water. That'll take care of the idiots.
post #31 of 55
Quote:
Originally Posted by Taskiss View Post

Apple should tell people to not put their iPhones in a bucket of water. That'll take care of the idiots.

Some of the idiots.
post #32 of 55
COOLFACTOR: am i hearing an echo of apple's pr department? all you really post are 'explanations' of apple's official statements..... let me guess, you are either directly on their payrol (its a fact that they monitor forums like these) or so apple blinded that they simply "can do no evil" no matter what.
post #33 of 55
Isn't there a halfway point here between adding full-blown 3rd-party apps and adding functionality to the iPhone?

Why can't we just get a Widgets icon on the iPhone's home screen that lists or Widgets. A less elegant solution would be to allow the home-screen to scroll revealing more icons than the 16+4 spaces available.

Personally, I'd like to see an iTunes tab when the iPhone is selected that would allow me to rearrange the icons as I see fit. Putting some unused ones into folders and moving certain ones to certain areas for easier access. Even allowing for the removal of certain icons the way you can with Apple's Customized Toolbar. A simple reset included as well.

There are over 3700 widgets out there. Most are not suited or optimized for the iPhone's interface but I would love to have most of Apple's default Widgets on my phone.

With all these hacks, why haven't these simple Widgets been revamped and added to the device? I may have actually hacked my phone then!

These should have been there from the start!
• Flight Tracker
• Package Tracker
• Translation
• Dictionary
• Business Finder
• People Finder
• Movies
• Unit Convertor
• Mayan End of the World Countdown Clock


PS: That Linux OpenMoko phone is hideous.
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post #34 of 55
Quote:
Originally Posted by palex9 View Post

COOLFACTOR: am i hearing an echo of apple's pr department? all you really post are 'explanations' of apple's official statements..... let me guess, you are either directly on their payrol (its a fact that they monitor forums like these) or so apple blinded that they simply "can do no evil" no matter what.

How come you didn't consider the possibility that he's just a satisfied customer? OR, are you a Microsoft/Verizon/whatever shill?

Hmmm...
post #35 of 55
Quote:
Originally Posted by coolfactor View Post

Apple has clearly stated, in public, that AppleTV is a "hobby" right now. That's confirmation that they are working on it, but not devoting all of their resources to it.

It's not a "hobby", it's just another product that Apple released to please the shareholders (just like the Mac mini). Even as crap as the product is compared to the competition, Apple knows that there are some devotees who will overlook the fact that it's crap and buy it anyway. I wonder how many of these has Apple sold, probably not that many, otherwise they would come out with sales figures. I'm betting that in a year from now they will have stop selling it (like the Hi-Fi) in favour of more lucrative businesses like the iPod/iPhone.
post #36 of 55
Quote:
Originally Posted by palex9 View Post

COOLFACTOR: am i hearing an echo of apple's pr department? all you really post are 'explanations' of apple's official statements..... let me guess, you are either directly on their payrol (its a fact that they monitor forums like these) or so apple blinded that they simply "can do no evil" no matter what.

No, he (or she) is someone who actually reads and understands what is being said. As I've said elsewhere Apple had been amazingly transparent in what they have been doing with the iPhone. They've said they weren't supporting third-party development. They went out of their way to warn those that did unlock their SIM that the 1.1.1 upgrade could brick their iPhones. Like others here I think Apple is making a mistake about the development but its their mistake to make. They are harming anyone, they aren't being deceptive. There are two recourses - don't buy it, send apple feedback. Otherwise, get over yourself.
post #37 of 55
Quote:
Originally Posted by physguy View Post

No, he (or she) is someone who actually reads and understands what is being said. As I've said elsewhere Apple had been amazingly transparent in what they have been doing with the iPhone. They've said they weren't supporting third-party development. They went out of their way to warn those that did unlock their SIM that the 1.1.1 upgrade could brick their iPhones. Like others here I think Apple is making a mistake about the development but its their mistake to make. They are harming anyone, they aren't being deceptive. There are two recourses - don't buy it, send apple feedback. Otherwise, get over yourself.

Oh, right, that's a good logic. It's like saying that because Ahmadinejad has stated that he is pursuing nuclear weaponry instead of lying makes it OK. I'm not complaining about Apple lying, I'm complaining on what I perceive as being several attempts at creating a monopoly, with the iPod/iPhone. We've all blamed Microsoft for doing it in the past, why should Apple receive any other treatment?
post #38 of 55
Quote:
Originally Posted by camimac View Post

It's not a "hobby", it's just another product that Apple released to please the shareholders (just like the Mac mini). Even as crap as the product is compared to the competition, Apple knows that there are some devotees who will overlook the fact that it's crap and buy it anyway. I wonder how many of these has Apple sold, probably not that many, otherwise they would come out with sales figures. I'm betting that in a year from now they will have stop selling it (like the Hi-Fi) in favour of more lucrative businesses like the iPod/iPhone.

They've sold over a quarter-million units. Not bad too shabby for a "hobby." It has the same 24-month accounting method as the iPhone and it isn't going to go away anytime soon. Apple needs this device more than you realize.

For the price, it's a great product when compared to similiar devices and it's Apple's lowest profit margin device. The point of the AppleTV is/was to get the studios interested in getting their content on iTunes with a feeling of security and control. That hasn't gone very well.

The AppleTV is only a "hobby" until HD movies and/or rentals become available on iTunes, then it becomes Apple's 4th leg. (speculation)


Worst Case Scenario:
If the all TV studios pulled out of iTunes then Apple merely reengineers AppleTV to be a DVR but doesn't charge monthly fees like TiVo. They could also use the USB 2.0 to daisy chain additional, stackable Apple branded HDDs to the AppleTV unit.

If the MPAA pulls out of iTunes then AppleTV could easily add a DVD-ROM, HD-DVD, or Blu-ray drive along with it's other DVR features.

I don't see Apple losing a dime on AppleTV. (speculation)
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post #39 of 55
Quote:
Originally Posted by palex9 View Post

COOLFACTOR: am i hearing an echo of apple's pr department? all you really post are 'explanations' of apple's official statements..... let me guess, you are either directly on their payrol (its a fact that they monitor forums like these) or so apple blinded that they simply "can do no evil" no matter what.

Neither. Nice try though. To me, it's just common sense. All the bitching about Apple not supporting 3rd-party apps on the iPhone has been spun as if Apple is against the idea. They're not. They're just rolling out their product according to their product roll-out plans. That doesn't include 3rd-party apps at this stage.
post #40 of 55
Quote:
Originally Posted by camimac View Post

Oh, right, that's a good logic. It's like saying that because Ahmadinejad has stated that he is pursuing nuclear weaponry instead of lying makes it OK. I'm not complaining about Apple lying, I'm complaining on what I perceive as being several attempts at creating a monopoly, with the iPod/iPhone. We've all blamed Microsoft for doing it in the past, why should Apple receive any other treatment?

If you understood the state of cellular carrier industry before Apple, and if you understood what Apple is trying to change, then you'd be willing to live with some of the limitations until such time that the marketplace is changed.

Let me repeat that but using music and mp3 players: If you understood the state of the music distribution industry (labels) before Apple, and if you understood what Apple was trying to change, then you'd be willing to live with DRM until such time that the marketplace is changed.

I could repeat it again for broadband IP, but the broadband IP market already changed from the days of closed access via AOL and Earthlink, to the IP bit pipe that is your cable or DSL company. (I'm not saying there aren't still challenges here, for example, the net neutrality issue.) This is the goal of Apple with regard to the cell phone market; to change it into a mobile IP market where the cell carrier is just a pipe like the cable or DSL company. (And the AppleTV will work a similar plan against the video distribution industry.) The question is how to get there?

Apple looked at an MVNO (source: Jobs). For what must be economic reasons, an MVNO has always been done with one carrier in an area providing the underlying service. So if Apple was an MVNO, iPhone would be locked to Apple (and its underlying carrier). All the handset revenue would belong to Apple, and the monthly service revenue would be split between Apple and the carrier. Instead of the MVNO, Apple decided to take advantage of the carrier's nationwide marketing and distribution support (since there are less than 200 Apple stores), making public the underlying carrier as AT&T; get them to revise their activation process, add visual voicemail, and unlimited data (but without VoIP and other limitations) at a reasonable price; and revised the split a bit in favor of the carrier (AT&T).

Let's explore what a next step could be. Possibly Apple could get AT&T to allow Voice over the data pipe (VoIP); AT&T could have a plan that charges $100 for unlimited data and VoIP. If AT&T's equipment could reliably measure VoIP usage, then there could be lower-cost plans with limited VoIP minutes. Of course, all this data will require that AT&T build out a bigger pipe (3G and above) nationwide. (Note: AT&T CEO did say they were working on VoIP.) To encourage AT&T to do this, Apple could reduce their monthly revenue share, possibly even to zero. (Note: You can only reduce your share if you have a share in the first place.)

There are lots of other possibilities; I don't presume to know exactly what Apple has in store, but there is much more, and this is just the first step.
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