This past week, Apple announced iPhone 2.0, the iPhone SDK for developers, and a little thing called App Store. I believe that most, if not all, Apple developers were tuned into the live blogs posting details of the event as it happened. I know we crashed Twitter chatting about it during the show.
What is all this and what does it mean? You can read about the enterprise extensions for the iPhone coming in June (or watch the presentation—it's gorgeous in HD), but for me and many other developers, the big news was the SDK—our ticket to writing software for the iPhone. The App Store is how Apple will distribute our applications and it's pretty sweet too. There's been some quibbling about the 30 percent that Apple will take for handling the process of selling our products through App Store, but I'm fine with it because I happen to love the way Apple Downloads works now with the publicity it gives our software and that's only one tiny piece of what App Store does.
Basically, App Store will give our customers a simple way to find software we have published for the iPhone, purchase, install, and license it. Then, when new releases are posted, App Store will make sure our customers get the latest versions of our iPhone applications. It's a very clean concept and, since iPhone software is not going to be our main business, one less thing I have to worry about. I can focus on creating a very cool version of MoneyWell Mobile and hand off the rest to Apple. There are still plenty of questions about beta testing, trials, returns, and other phases of the development and sales process, but that hasn't dampened my excitement one bit! Just knowing that nearly 100 percent of all iPhone users will go to this one place to find iPhone software simplifies my life. Who needs to pay for Google Ad Words, which can easily add up to more than 30%, when they are already in the store?
I also think that iPhone 2.0 will storm the enterprise and replace a healthy percentage of RIM phones. There are analysts that claim the iPhone is too expense or still has security holes compared to the RIM Crackberry, but they are way off. They are underestimating the power of great software—and there will be thousands of great software products available when this new iPhone software is released in June. Even if the corporations don't buy phones for their employees, the iPhone will be pulled into the enterprise by employees that want to be more productive. This can easily happen without direct intervention of the IT staff because Apple is tying the iPhone directly to corporate Exchange mail servers and IT doesn't need to do any heavy lifting.
I can't wait to see what happens. It's a very exciting time to be a Mac developer! I feel like a kid at Christmas after finding out my parents just won the lottery!
I've got way too much work to finish on MoneyWell 1.3 to start playing with the SDK now (okay, I did make one sample application just for kicks), but all the latest tools are installed on my iMac and available when I'm ready to code and that's even more incentive to finish and deliver this release of MoneyWell.
What's in store for MoneyWell Mobile? It's too early give details but expect the iPhone version to make it easy to view and update your spending buckets while on the road.