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Apple’s Jobs: ‘You don’t want your phone to be like a PC’

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By LC Angell

Contributing Editor
Published: Thursday, January 11, 2007
News Categories: iPhone

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Apple CEO Steve Jobs says consumers can expect more mobile applications for the iPhone by the time the device ships in June—but that Apple will control what applications make it onto the iPhone, much like it has done with every iPod.

“We define everything that is on the phone,” Jobs told the New York Times. “You don’t want your phone to be like a PC. The last thing you want is to have loaded three apps on your phone and then you go to make a call and it doesn’t work anymore. These are more like iPods than they are like computers.” Jobs told Newsweek something similar. “You don’t want your phone to be an open platform,” he said. “You need it to work when you need it to work. Cingular doesn’t want to see their West Coast network go down because some application messed up.”

“These are devices that need to work, and you can’t do that if you load any software on them,” Jobs continued. “That doesn’t mean there’s not going to be software to buy that you can load on them coming from us. It doesn’t mean we have to write it all, but it means it has to be more of a controlled environment.”

During the unveiling of the iPhone, which runs a scaled down version of Mac OS X, Jobs showed off applications for email, web browsing, photos, SMS text messaging, and Google Maps, as well as widgets for weather and stocks. Other icons on the iPhone prototype include Calendar, Camera, Calculator, Notes, Clock, and Settings.

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Comments

21

I think the reason for Apple not allowing third party software on the iPhone is for the good the consumer. Apple wants the iPhone to have the same reputation as the rest of it’s line: an easy to use,  good quality product. If not allowing third party apps to run rampant on the iPhone’s OS will protect the user’s investment (and Apple’s product and reputation as a whole), then so be it. They created it, so they really have every right to. I’d rather have my use of the iPhone be slightly restricted than to be pissed when my $500 or $600 investment doesn’t work properly. With that being said, I won’t be buying one.  The pending fact that the iPhone won’t have voice dialing is completely unforgiveable. My smartphone with T-Mobile is working out well. Switching to Cingular is out of the question. But the iPhone is a mighty fine device that will remain on my “Must Have or I’ll Just Die” list for years to come!

Posted by Rick on January 11, 2007 at 7:19 PM (PDT)

22

1) Web Apps

2) Widget Apps

Anything beyond what those will serve is very niche based.

The web apps are what the focus will be with widget frontends.

Toby

Posted by Toby on January 11, 2007 at 7:28 PM (PDT)

23

I think Jobs just wants to keep the iPhone still very much like an iPod but with several more capabilities. And currently our wonderfully loved iPods are simple, easy to use, and enjoy-and they would not be that way if they were like our PC’s, or a Palm Pilot, where really things do run more complicated and not as smooth as the easy going, wonderful iPod. I think it makes a lot of sense, and the only way to keep the iPhone as easy to use, and enjoyable as the simple yet talented iPod, would be by not making the iPhone like your PC.

Posted by Jonathan on January 11, 2007 at 7:36 PM (PDT)

24

Jobs’ mind trick doesn’t work on me. Apple needs to provide a safe environment for 3rd party apps to run where they won’t interfere with calls, etc. Not completely cripple the machine.

Posted by TM on January 11, 2007 at 7:45 PM (PDT)

25

As Jobs stated in keynote “when you are serious about software you make the hardware”. True, that’s why Apple products have always worked so well. But you used to have very little choice when it came to Apple hardware. And for a very long time 80’s until 2000 Apple only had 1/8 market share, and they had a superior product. Lets suppose PCs never existed. Apple had 100% computer sales they would have never sold a third of the computers the PCs was responsible for selling. Jobs already said he only wanted a 1% share of cell phones I believe him he has always been elitist that way, he doesn’t want to sell to masses just rich dumbasses And yes being able to put any software is the only way I could justify $600.00 I would at very least want realVNC client remember this is supposed to run over WIFI so adding third party software should be allowed over wifi at very least.

Posted by raidenwolf on January 11, 2007 at 7:49 PM (PDT)

26

I don’t want my phone to be like a PC.  I want my phone to be like a Mac.

And I can load software on a Mac.

This is a deal-breaker for me.  My Windows Mobile phone might be a little unstable, but it lets me load up the tools I need.

I really want an iPhone, but I’m not going to carry 2 devices just because Steve Jobs has an ego problem.  I’ll keep using my Windows phone, since it does what I need, and I can pretty much 100% guarantee the iPhone won’t.

Posted by brian on January 11, 2007 at 7:51 PM (PDT)

27

@DJ
Please link to 1 OSX virus in the wild otherwise please stop with your FUD.

Spam is an email issue on anything other than XP..where it becomes an OS problem due to wide open holes in it.

Posted by Rytr on January 11, 2007 at 7:57 PM (PDT)

28

How great would Macs be without 3rd party software?

Sure mum and gran might not want to install other apps, but a huge percentage of users will want to, and they’re cutting out a huge percentage of potential users.

http://bla.st/mac/

14 questions about the iPhone:
http://bla.st/site/blog/40/

Posted by Tim Bromhead on January 11, 2007 at 8:00 PM (PDT)

29

People keep saying that Apple’s success comes from tight control of the platform.

That’s true for the iPod, but it’s not true for OS X.  Many people have loads of third-party applications installed on their Macs—and yet, the platform is successful.

Those apps aren’t going to be on the iPhone, and that’s a shame.

Posted by Matt on January 11, 2007 at 9:02 PM (PDT)

30

Seems to me this product is being marketed as a phone that happens to run using OSX - not a “Pocket Mac”. As much as I love my Treo, I’ve always viewed it and Windows Mobile/Pocket PC devices as an OS platform with a phone built-in.  We try to use these things like miniature computers, then we’re angry when they don’t live up to such an expectation.  Microsoft, Palm, etc. promote that expectation. Apple was wise not just shove a telephone radio into a Newton!

As a long-time Apple fanatic, I love the idea of running certain 3rd party applications on a device that fits in my pocket.  If Apple ever creates one, I’ll buy it .  For now, my Macbook Pro will suffice.  I look forward to having an easy to use phone, with internet access, real ipod features and beautiful design that won’t accidentally press buttons while I’m talking on it or wearing it. “iPHONE - that’s what the guy is selling, isn’t it?”

Posted by TSP on January 11, 2007 at 9:41 PM (PDT)

31

Jobs followed up by waving his hand and commenting that these weren’t the droids you were looking for.

Posted by rainking187 on January 11, 2007 at 9:44 PM (PDT)

32

I don’t want my iPhone to be like a computer. I want it to do the things it is advertised to do such as: make and receive phone calls, the internet, get email, text message, listen to iTunes music, play video, and do it in a great way, anything else Apple decides to throw in there is great. My problem with other smart phones is the fact that they try to do more than they are good at. Yeah, you could make all kinds of great third party apps…... but 99% of the time those third party apps suck and then I’m stuck with an app that sucks and out anywhere from 10 - 40 bucks for that app. No thank you, to most third party apps. Let’s face it smart phones are NOT computers, right off the bat they lack the proper display to be effective as a computer. Let us let smart phones do what they are great at and not try to make them something they clearly are not. As far as Apple and the iPhone are concerned I think they are giving the vast majority of users the kind of phone they want. I think when you say it is a niche product you are wrong. The niche product is all other smart phones that cater to the geeks of the world. The average person is going to love the hell out of this phone.

Posted by dozx on January 11, 2007 at 9:44 PM (PDT)

33

if you remember a while ago everyone said the same things about the ipod when it came out and how it was, bad because it didn’t have a AM/FM radio in it. Look at the ipod now…..... hmmmmm…..... reality Check…......  most people don’t want a phone that is a computer and operates like one. The numbers say it all, only a very small fraction of users, use smart phones. Most users have regular phones and are quite happy when xyz company adds a card game to the phone to enhance it. You guys are looking at this phone the wrong way if you want a smart phone that is a pocket computer than you don’t want this phone. If you want a phone that has 99.9% of what you can do with a smart phone plus the fact that everything works great together and you don’t want to have to worry about settings and all the other things that make other smart phones difficult, than this is for you. I can sum up the iPhone the same way I can sum up the Mac & iPod, it will just work. The argument will always be the same for an Apple product, it gets out of your way and lets you get done what you need to get done, without throwing things in your face that you really don’t care to deal with and just distract you from being productive.

Posted by dozx on January 11, 2007 at 10:10 PM (PDT)

34

Sucks… if I can’t load 3rd party apps I CAN’T get the phone because I use 3rd party apps on a daily basis… and these aren’t phone utils or stuff like that these are medicine programs I need to do my work on a daily basis. I have over 400mb of programs and I use each and every bit of it.

BTW I don’t get what is wrong with the treo… Mine hardly ever crashes… hasn’t crashed in weeks. Y’all should fix the sync stuff.

Posted by Victor on January 11, 2007 at 10:24 PM (PDT)

35

DJ, you should try doing some research before you start talking.

I had 10 URLs a quick Google away that I was going to post with this comment, but iLounge’s stupid commenting software kept telling me that my comment could not be accepted, despite the fact that I was making completely legitimate use of HTML to back up an argument. Now it just looks toothless. Thanks for choosing comment spam filters that prevent people from posting legitimate comments, guys.

Posted by Ian Adams on January 12, 2007 at 3:42 AM (PDT)

36

The reason why many Treo and Windows PPC, mobile users need 3rd party software is because the software built into the current OS’s aren’t satisfactory to many users standards. 

Apple’s response to an open platform is saying this without saying it.  They know how to create software.  They will also impliment 3rd party software, (read the newsweek article) but it will have to be tested by Apple before it’s released.

I think many consumers are failing to realize that Apple wants our feedback before it hits the market. 
Tell me which manufacturer announces a phone 6 months before hand with a full 1 1/2 hour demo and hands on reviews afterwards? 

Personally I think if more companies took the time to listen to users, that the large market for 3rd party mobile phone software and issues of the overall performance of the phone would decrease.

Posted by Robert on January 12, 2007 at 4:36 AM (PDT)

37

“The reason why many Treo and Windows PPC, mobile users need 3rd party software is because the software built into the current OS’s aren’t satisfactory to many users standards. “

Really? Most of the software I use is medical software that would not be included anyway. The only software I’ve replaced on my treo is IE with Opera. Will Apple create this software for me and allow me to pay them to use it as well? Not allowing 3rd party software because the user is too “stupid” to not break the phone is retarded.

Posted by Victor on January 12, 2007 at 5:17 AM (PDT)

38

Hey Victor, since you really need your medical app on your phone, here’s an idea: keep using your Treo.  Meanwhile I and many others will be enjoying our iPhones.  Jeesh!  what a load of b_tching.

Posted by dodo on January 12, 2007 at 6:01 AM (PDT)

39

Without being able to install apps of my choosing, the iPhone just dropped from an “oh-my-gawd-I-cant-wait” gadget to a “wait-and-see-if-they-stop-being-idiots” gadget.  Put the brakes on, big time, for me personally.

Posted by cl0r0x70 on January 12, 2007 at 6:58 AM (PDT)

40

People who have used Symbian based phones know what a bunch o crap Job’s talking.

Posted by ovidiu on January 12, 2007 at 6:58 AM (PDT)

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