Blood on the water in the App Store?
The dust from Apple WWDC is only starting to settle and many a startup who had an App in the App Store is discovering that the announcements yesterday may have made their contribution to the App Store redundant. One example of this that everyone in my twitter feed cited is the marvelous Waze whose social GPS and mapping app may be feeling the heat from Apple implementing their own maps but I’m not so sure.
My question though is why are people acting so surprised?
Let’s refresh our memory how they feel at Apple:
“We’ve been there before, and intermediate layers between the platform and the developer ultimately produces sub-standard apps and hinders the progress of the platform.” this was a quote from Steve Jobs in a Download Squad article explaining why they were slapping down Adobe.
“They are lazy. They have all this potential to do interesting things but they just refuse to do it. They don’t do anything with the approaches that Apple is taking, like Carbon. Apple does not support Flash because it is so buggy. Whenever a Mac crashes more often than not it is because of Flash. No one will be using Flash. The world is moving to HTML5,” also credited to Steve Jobs.
Hindsight is always 20-20…
It’s easy to look back and slap your forehead as you see your app “emulated” by new features in iOS6 and wonder why you exclusively developed for the App Store.
If you have to roll the dice and have limited resources for development then of course you are going to gamble on the biggest market share and most popular platform.
Still you have to ask, “What does Apple view as the point of the App Store? Is it what it seems or is it a proving ground to discover and emulate 3rd Party Apps for incorporation as new features into the next iOS?”
The Warptest perspective…
I don’t believe that Apple ever intended to use the App Store in this manner but the analytics that come from consumer habits and purchases are a siren call to market researchers that simply cannot be ignored.
- In reality no unicorns were slaughtered or dreams were shattered yesterday.
- There was a huge wakeup call to App Startups that the competition got tougher from yesterday.
- If you are a Startup or App developer intent on success you had better release a new groundbreaking App shortly after WWDC to gain the maximum ground in your niche.
The knock-on effect is that long term Apple has just given a huge boost to Windows Phone and to an extent Android as well.
Apple are not the only game in town and the Windows Marketplace is virgin territory, until now mostly ignored by many of the same Startups and App Developers who are feeling the pain right now.
Star Trek VI: The Undiscovered Country
(Image courtesy of IMDB’s prodigious movie database)
So if you are reading this and you have ignored Windows Phone development then let me say you continue to do so at your own peril. The Windows Phone SDK download link is right here for you.. it’s a brave new world for those willing to seize it, are you?