09 Apr 2010

My thoughts on the iPhoneOS 4.0

I’d been meaning to post this earlier, but we have some pretty major deadlines at work, and I’ve been busy.

I did get to see Steve Job’s keynote on the new iPhone OS 4.0.

So, what did I think. There was no surprise with multitasking. It HAD to arrive, else Apple would be left behind in the stone ages, and let Google run way ahead of them. The big surprise was the iAds. It certainly seems impressive, but it’s hard to know until it’s out. I don’t doubt that it will probably be a huge success.

It’s hard not to be impressed with Apple. They obviously do more than make great hardware. They make hardware and software that lots of companies copy. BUT, just like any company, they also copy. It really bothers me how Steve Jobs gets up and acts as though everyone copies Apple, and Apple has never copied anyone, and invents every good idea ever. The truth is that all companies have to get their inspiration from elsewhere. And, companies have to add features that consumers want. Sometimes a company adds features because a competitor has been very successful with that feature. While I think companies should try to be unique, I think they should just admit when they take inspiration elsewhere. Currently Steve Jobs hates Google. He hates them because he thinks they copied the iPhone. Lets be serious. What did they copy. Did….

  • Apple invent the phone? No.
  • Apple invent the smartphone? No
  • Apple invent the web browser? No
  • Apple invent the the email client? No
  • Apple invent Google Maps? No
  • Apple invent the calculator? No
  • Apple invent the calendar? No
  • Apple invent contacts lists and Todo lists? No

So, really, Apple, back down on the arrogance factor! Sure Apple brought a TON to the table. They revolutionized the smartphone when they arrived. They released the first capacitive multitouch smartphone with a great web browser and a great on screen keyboard. They did a lot right. But they have no right to think that all other smartphone makers are just Apple imitators. How good would the iPhone be without Google Maps. Without the Safari Web browser (Apple copied the code for Safari from the Konqueror Web browser on Linux). The list goes on. I’m sure more than half of all iPhone users use it with their Gmail account.. Apple’s attempt at competing with Gmail, Google Calendar and Docs ( was a joke.

Google’s Android really is Apple’s biggest competitor to the iPhone and Steve Jobs knows it. He’s scared. It’s because he’s scared that he’s going to go after Google. The first attack is by forcing developers to use an Apple approved programming language for the iPhone. This means that it’s impossible to easily port a program from the iPhone to Android. Steve Jobs knows this, and it’s deliberate. If a developer had to choose between writing an iPhone app or an Android app, he’s likely to choose the iPhone, because there are currently many more users. He’s basically trying to stop iPhone developers from coding for Android.

Second, Apple is creating their own advertising component.

Third (and this is a guess), Apple is going to replace Google Maps, (and possibly Google search) on the iPhone. This won’t happen yet, but it’s clear that this is Apple’s hope. I know Steve jobs hates Google. He’ll do anything to remove any dependence Apple has on Google.

I personally love the Android operating systems. Sure, it has it’s problems, but I believe Google is working on them, and they’re coding at an incredible pace. The Motorola Droid was really the first Android device to be better than the iPhone. But it’s a lot better. Apple’s going to have to do something really special come July with the 4th gen iPhone!

But, for those who keep up on tech news, you’ll know that Microsoft is coming out with Windows Phone 7 by the end of the year. Despite being a pretty big improvement, when you start from scratch, you’re often missing fairly basic features at launch, and keep adding (just look at the iPhone when it launched compared to now). Interestingly, Windows Phone 7 doesn’t have multitasking. This is pretty funny, because during their announcements they compared themselves to the iPhone, and gave many of the same reasons Apple did for not supporting it. It’s going to be an embarrassing launch now.. 🙂