Feeds

Triple play puts iPhone ahead of Android

SDK, App Store, and the Holy phone

Top three mobile application threats

Make no mistake, Apple's iPhone SDK is a big deal. Finally, developers can get serious about a device stealing the hearts and minds of business and consumer end users.

When I last wrote about the iPhone, I suggested that because there were a sufficient number of unanswered questions about key development parameters, the iPhone should probably be your second platform choice behind Google's Android.

With the combination of the SDK, online application marketplace and the phone, I'm no longer certain this is the best decision. Apple has demonstrated it understands end-to-end platform management. Hardware, software, accessories, instruction, distribution and, of course, monetization - lock, stock and two smoking barrels.

There's a decent overview of the SDK, released last week, at Endgadget so I won't waste too much ink here. I'll give you the big, moving parts instead.

First some stats: the iPhone has 28 per cent of the smartphone market share compared with primary competitor RIM at 41 per cent, according to Canalys. The iPhone, though, with its superior browsing capability represented 71 per cent of all mobile internet usage in the category.

There are now more than 1,000 web applications that have been developed for the platform. Keep in mind that the iPhone hasn't even been on the market for a year. If nothing else, this is a strong indicator of just how excited developers are about it and how much demand there appears to be for software that runs on Apple's handset.

At the enterprise level, too, demand is high. Apple has committed to providing a whole suite of enterprise services backed by a new architecture specifically for the iPhone and it's licensed Microsoft's ActiveSync to pull it all together seamlessly. The features Apple has pushed out appear to make the iPhone a most capable device for the enterprise - if only it would sort out cut and paste!

The development environment is sure to excite - especially if you like working with Mac development tools. Third-party developers will be able to build native apps using the exact same SDK as Apple developers.

Apple layer cake

There are four development layers: the core operating system, core services, media layer, and Cocoa Touch. There are multiple APIs for each layer providing the developer an exquisite degree of control over virtually every physical aspect of the device - including power management, sound, camera, location awareness and, of course, user interface.

This is complimented by a robust set of tools including a source editor, a remote debugger, an advanced device emulator that runs on your Mac, and there's the added ability to test applications in the real world on your iPhone using either the mobile or a Wi-Fi network.

Most development is done using Apple's xCode that has been updated for the iPhone, although there are also specific tools such as the interface builder that makes it faster and easier to build UI components.

Maximizing your infrastructure through virtualization

More from The Register

next story
Apple fanbois SCREAM as update BRICKS their Macbook Airs
Ragegasm spills over as firmware upgrade kills machines
HIDDEN packet sniffer spy tech in MILLIONS of iPhones, iPads – expert
Don't panic though – Apple's backdoor is not wide open to all, guru tells us
Mozilla fixes CRITICAL security holes in Firefox, urges v31 upgrade
Misc memory hazards 'could be exploited' - and guess what, one's a Javascript vuln
NO MORE ALL CAPS and other pleasures of Visual Studio 14
Unpicking a packed preview that breaks down ASP.NET
Captain Kirk sets phaser to SLAUGHTER after trying new Facebook app
William Shatner less-than-impressed by Zuck's celebrity-only app
Cheer up, Nokia fans. It can start making mobes again in 18 months
The real winner of the Nokia sale is *drumroll* ... Nokia
EU dons gloves, pokes Google's deals with Android mobe makers
El Reg cops a squint at investigatory letters
Chrome browser has been DRAINING PC batteries for YEARS
Google is only now fixing ancient, energy-sapping bug
prev story

Whitepapers

Top three mobile application threats
Prevent sensitive data leakage over insecure channels or stolen mobile devices.
Implementing global e-invoicing with guaranteed legal certainty
Explaining the role local tax compliance plays in successful supply chain management and e-business and how leading global brands are addressing this.
Top 8 considerations to enable and simplify mobility
In this whitepaper learn how to successfully add mobile capabilities simply and cost effectively.
Application security programs and practises
Follow a few strategies and your organization can gain the full benefits of open source and the cloud without compromising the security of your applications.
The Essential Guide to IT Transformation
ServiceNow discusses three IT transformations that can help CIO's automate IT services to transform IT and the enterprise.