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T-Mobile To Open App Store For All of Their Phones

Soulskill posted about 6 years ago | from the cutting-off-a-slice-of-apple-pie dept.

Cellphones 103

tsa brings news that T-Mobile will be developing their own application store to compete with Apple's popular distribution scheme. Their aim is to be capable of bringing new services to all of their customers. Excerpting: "Developers will submit their applications online; the revenue-share agreement will be based on how much the application uses the network; and the applications will be presented to the user in order of popularity, not according to T-Mobile's preferences. It's all pretty straightforward, but the more interesting aspect is that this will apply to all the carrier's platforms from upcoming Android to Java to Sidekick and Windows Mobile."

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FR0st! (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | about 6 years ago | (#24537337)

Frosted str8 from Apple iPhone with the FR0st App I bought from App Store. FR00st!!

Unter Gleben Glauben Globen Mein Fuehrer (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 6 years ago | (#24537619)

Stop the fighting dammit! This is a war room! Zieg T-Mobile!

Need a standardized platform! (4, Insightful)

BadAnalogyGuy (945258) | about 6 years ago | (#24537347)

Developing for the iPhone is easy. There is only one platform.

But Windows Mobile, Android, and Java are three completely different platforms. That's not to mention platforms based on Brew or Symbian, even. Developing for an individual phone is easy, but to reach the entire market, it's very difficult.

I suppose if you aren't interested in reaching many users, that developing for a single platform like the iPhone is a decent choice. However, if you want to remain viable both in terms of independence and also monetarily, you need to have a broad base of users, not just a small group of fanatics.

Unfortunately, because of the disparity among the various platforms, the difficulty is high to develop a broadly applicable application. So the answer is to target either the least common denominator (there is none in the current phone market) or to target a generic platform that is relatively widely installed.

Welcome to MIDP. Yes, you'll hate every minute of it, but at least it exists.

Re:Need a standardized platform! (4, Insightful)

Llywelyn (531070) | about 6 years ago | (#24537383)

I suppose if you aren't interested in reaching many users, that developing for a single platform like the iPhone is a decent choice. However, if you want to remain viable both in terms of independence and also monetarily, you need to have a broad base of users, not just a small group of fanatics.

You seem to have a different definition of "many" than I do. iPhone adoption has been huge so far, and not just "a small group of fanatics."

Re:Need a standardized platform! (1, Insightful)

Bentov (993323) | about 6 years ago | (#24537485)

I suppose if you aren't interested in reaching many users, that developing for a single platform like the iPhone is a decent choice. However, if you want to remain viable both in terms of independence and also monetarily, you need to have a broad base of users, not just a small group of fanatics.

You seem to have a different definition of "many" than I do. iPhone adoption has been huge so far, and not just "a small group of fanatics."

It's funny you know, if you replace "the iPhone" with "Linux" I think the sentence makes a little more sense. I think we have a case of the pot calling the kettle black here...

Re:Need a standardized platform! (4, Insightful)

FLAGGR (800770) | about 6 years ago | (#24537573)

iPhone owners have a proven track record of paying for things. Just sayin'.

Tasting of the Pudding (1)

MisterSquid (231834) | about 6 years ago | (#24538359)

No kidding [slashdot.org] .






DISCLAIMER: I am an Apple user and iPhone owner.

Re:Need a standardized platform! (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 6 years ago | (#24538817)

I suppose if you aren't interested in reaching many users, that developing for a single platform like the iPhone is a decent choice. However, if you want to remain viable both in terms of independence and also monetarily, you need to have a broad base of users, not just a small group of fanatics.

You seem to have a different definition of "many" than I do. iPhone adoption has been huge so far, and not just "a small group of fanatics."

It's funny you know, if you replace "the iPhone" with "Linux" I think the sentence makes a little more sense. I think we have a case of the pot calling the kettle black here...

enough of the pot calling the kettle black already... that's like the 5th time in 2 days someone's used that expression. come up with something original already...

Re:Need a standardized platform! (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 6 years ago | (#24537783)

And don't forget most apps also work on the iPod Touch!

Re:Need a standardized platform! (4, Insightful)

Aetuneo (1130295) | about 6 years ago | (#24537987)

But if Apple chooses to cut you off (which it can whenever it wants, by removing your app from its store or by pushing an update which deletes it from all iPhones), you've just lost all access to the market. On the other hand, if you have an application which is being sold for many platforms, you are not as dependent upon the whims of one company which controls both the platform and the store.

Re:Need a standardized platform! (1)

tyrione (134248) | about 6 years ago | (#24540237)

But if Apple chooses to cut you off (which it can whenever it wants, by removing your app from its store or by pushing an update which deletes it from all iPhones), you've just lost all access to the market. On the other hand, if you have an application which is being sold for many platforms, you are not as dependent upon the whims of one company which controls both the platform and the store.

Write a must have application for the iPhone and I guarantee you it will never be cut off. The whole point of the development platform for the iPhone is to drive more phone sales. It does nothing for Apple to ostracize products that make their platform bonafide leaders in their respective market(s).

Re:Need a standardized platform! (1)

Shazow (263582) | about 6 years ago | (#24541521)

Write a must have application for the iPhone and I guarantee you it will never be cut off.

A must have application like NetShare [slashdot.org] perhaps?

Yes, chances are Apple will leave you alone unless you're being particularly clever [slashdot.org] . But you can only have so many use-the-accelerometer-to-maneuver-the-virtual-ball-into-the-correct-hole apps.

- shazow

Re:Need a standardized platform! (1)

Llywelyn (531070) | about 6 years ago | (#24541775)

That would be a consequence of Apple's contract with AT&T, and yes, if your application is in violation of Apple's contract with AT&T you can expect it to be removed. Of course, if its in violation of the service agreement, that would go for *any* service provider and *any* phone, though you may run a lower risk of getting caught with some than with others.

Believe it or not, Apple is not going to go around and randomly ban apps "just cause we can."

Re:Need a standardized platform! (1)

Shazow (263582) | about 6 years ago | (#24542037)

Since when is the iPhone only available to AT&T customers?

Do iPhone apps have to read and conform to every single iPhone provider in the world?

Re:Need a standardized platform! (1)

yabos (719499) | about 6 years ago | (#24544895)

I bought it in the Canadian store thank you very much.

Re:Need a standardized platform! (1)

Llywelyn (531070) | about 6 years ago | (#24544917)

...and as a result we may see NetShare show up in appstores outside of the US in those areas where the contract supports it. Or they may just decide that it isn't worth the additional infrastructure and risk to set up contract-dependent appstores, my guess is that it wasn't something they thought about beforehand.

The fundamental message is the same though: Yes, if your app is in violation of their contract with the single largest network for iPhones in the world, you can expect your app to be removed. Given that the contracts with the others are probably not all that different overall, they will probably just build such things into their contract with the developers and leave it at that and it was probably an oversight that this particular clause wasn't in there in the first place.

Jobs has a different definition of "many" too (5, Insightful)

MacDork (560499) | about 6 years ago | (#24538243)

You seem to have a different definition of "many" than I do. iPhone adoption has been huge so far, and not just "a small group of fanatics."

As the Washington Post article mentions, Steve Jobs' stated goal for Apple is 10 million iPhones in 2008. A rather modest goal for an industry that pushes more than a billion units a year. For the first half of the year, Apple has only sold 2.4 million iPhones.

Of course, the spin in this article doesn't stop with iPhone "popularity"... The article is also spinning this as a competition between T-Mobile and Apple. There is no competition. You cannot choose T-mobile's app store over Apple's on your iPhone. Likewise, you cannot shop at Apple's store on a T-Mobile phone. Apple's store is irrelevant to T-Mobile's ambitions. Apple exists in its own little walled garden.

Furthermore, it sounds as if T-Mobile is competing with Nokia's Download Store which, BTW, predates Apple's app store... and iPhone for that matter. Why wasn't the actual competition mentioned? That's where the meat is in this news... Will Nokia be blocked by T-Mobile on their locked handsets? Will the T-Mobile store offer a better deal to S60 developers? Will Nokia withhold signed apps from T-Mobile or fast track the signing process for Nokia Download Store developers?

Nope, no real news in this article. It's just fanboy infotisement. How did it even make front page? News for nerds indeed...

Re:Jobs has a different definition of "many" too (2, Interesting)

onefriedrice (1171917) | about 6 years ago | (#24539091)

Apple's store is irrelevant to T-Mobile's ambitions. Apple exists in its own little walled garden.

You are assuming that just because the two stores will operate separately without compatibility that there is no competition. This is obviously false. If Apple's App Store acts, in any capacity, as an agent to draw new customers to Apple/AT&T then there are that many fewer customers going with T-Mobile.

Because of this, T-Mobile's decision to develop an app store for phones on their network was very likely a direct result of Apple's App Store in order to stay competitive. On the other hand, the Nokia Download Store seems much less relevant since T-Mobile obviously found it lacking enough to create their own. So in what way is the App Store irrelevant to T-Mobile?

Re:Jobs has a different definition of "many" too (1)

ceejayoz (567949) | about 6 years ago | (#24539551)

As the Washington Post article mentions, Steve Jobs' stated goal for Apple is 10 million iPhones in 2008. A rather modest goal for an industry that pushes more than a billion units a year.

Sure, if you're talking about the entire cell phone market. Most of those won't be a target for an app store. Smart phones are the market, and Apple was able to grab 28% of it even before the iPhone 3G [techcrunch.com] .

For the first half of the year, Apple has only sold 2.4 million iPhones.

No surprise there. Who's going to buy one of the old ones when it's an open secret that a new version will be out soon?

That's why they sold a million 3Gs on the release weekend [yahoo.com] .

Re:Jobs has a different definition of "many" too (1)

tyrione (134248) | about 6 years ago | (#24540273)

As the Washington Post article mentions, Steve Jobs' stated goal for Apple is 10 million iPhones in 2008. A rather modest goal for an industry that pushes more than a billion units a year.

Sure, if you're talking about the entire cell phone market. Most of those won't be a target for an app store. Smart phones are the market, and Apple was able to grab 28% of it even before the iPhone 3G [techcrunch.com] .

For the first half of the year, Apple has only sold 2.4 million iPhones.

No surprise there. Who's going to buy one of the old ones when it's an open secret that a new version will be out soon?

That's why they sold a million 3Gs on the release weekend [yahoo.com] .

You might as well save your breath. People will cite throw away phones that telcos can't even give away as part of the same market as the iPhone. You're absolutely correct that the future of Telcos in the wireless markets are Smartphones. This is where Apple will be and continue to become the market leader.

Re:Jobs has a different definition of "many" too (1)

mdwh2 (535323) | about 6 years ago | (#24549303)

Sure, if you're talking about the entire cell phone market. Most of those won't be a target for an app store. Smart phones are the market

I don't have a smart phone, but it can still run applications. Things have moved on since the 1990s.

That's why they sold a million 3Gs on the release weekend.

Wow. They were so utterly late to market with a years old technology, so everyone who wanted one had to wait until then. By that same point in time, Motorola (to pick a company at random) has shipped tens of millions (if not many more). Not to mention all the free advertising Apple got before and at launch, which other phone companies do not receive.

Re:Jobs has a different definition of "many" too (1)

tsa (15680) | about 6 years ago | (#24539583)

Actually I had posted a completely different text in which I stated that on the one hand the emerging of these special stores is a good thing because you get guaranteed virus- and spyware free app, but on the other hand the dependence on just one distributor who controls what you can run on your phone is scary. My intention was to start a discussion about that. If Apple were to make all applications for their Macs only available through a Mac Apps Store, everybody but the most fanatic Apple fans would cry foul, but most people don't seem to mind that Apple does exactly that for the portable computer that the iPhone basically is. I find that a scary development; the main reason why I do not want an iPhone.

Re:Jobs has a different definition of "many" too (1)

tyrione (134248) | about 6 years ago | (#24540251)

You seem to have a different definition of "many" than I do. iPhone adoption has been huge so far, and not just "a small group of fanatics."

As the Washington Post article mentions, Steve Jobs' stated goal for Apple is 10 million iPhones in 2008. A rather modest goal for an industry that pushes more than a billion units a year. For the first half of the year, Apple has only sold 2.4 million iPhones.

Of course, the spin in this article doesn't stop with iPhone "popularity"... The article is also spinning this as a competition between T-Mobile and Apple. There is no competition. You cannot choose T-mobile's app store over Apple's on your iPhone. Likewise, you cannot shop at Apple's store on a T-Mobile phone. Apple's store is irrelevant to T-Mobile's ambitions. Apple exists in its own little walled garden.

Furthermore, it sounds as if T-Mobile is competing with Nokia's Download Store which, BTW, predates Apple's app store... and iPhone for that matter. Why wasn't the actual competition mentioned? That's where the meat is in this news... Will Nokia be blocked by T-Mobile on their locked handsets? Will the T-Mobile store offer a better deal to S60 developers? Will Nokia withhold signed apps from T-Mobile or fast track the signing process for Nokia Download Store developers?

Nope, no real news in this article. It's just fanboy infotisement. How did it even make front page? News for nerds indeed...

The article is already out-dated as Apple hs been said to be requesting manufacturing of the iPhone 3G toward 700,000 units per week.

Re:Jobs has a different definition of "many" too (1)

forgoil (104808) | about 6 years ago | (#24540689)

Just wanted to point out that people often forget that it's not just the iPhone, but also the iPod Touch. So the market for the Apple Appstore can be both depending on what app you have. Makes the market as a whole larger.

Not that Apple has failed in selling those 10 million iPhones in 2008 yet. I am sure time will answer that one though :)

Re:Jobs has a different definition of "many" too (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 6 years ago | (#24560551)

There is competition in the sense that the number of mobile users in the us is getting closer and closer to a fixed number, meaning that carriers are mostly losing/gaining customers at the expense of other carriers.

So yes, Iphone (ATT), is competing with T-Mobile, and it's AppStore is completely relevant to T-Mobile, as they see a marketplace like that for a growing userbase as a feature they would like to have and are trying to copy it.

Currently it's a big hassle to get anything published on any carriers, and it sounds like T-Mobile wants to make that easier in order to provide a richer application environment to attract customers.

Whether they can make it work or not remains to be seen, however...

Re:Need a standardized platform! (1)

Detritus (11846) | about 6 years ago | (#24538379)

Huge? Most of the people that I know own a cell phone, and none of them own an iPhone. In fact, the only iPhones that I've seen have been in ads. Apple may have sold millions of iPhones, but they still have just a tiny slice of the global cell phone market.

Re:Need a standardized platform! (1)

trjonescp (954259) | about 6 years ago | (#24538391)

What's the iPhone market share of all cell phone users? Two? Three percent? That's small.

Re:Need a standardized platform! (1)

Llywelyn (531070) | about 6 years ago | (#24538575)

What percentage of all cell phone users will buy from an appstore? How much revenue will they generate for you? Do the various platforms that they are building for support what you want your app to do? How much effort is designed to target these various platforms vs. targeting the iPhone? These are more important questions that "what percentage of the global cell phone market is comprised of iPhones."

So let's say you want a simplistic app that reports on some basic data and can be ported to just about any phone. Great! Your app actually can be built on several different platforms (good luck building some of what is available on the AppStore for anything but the iPhone and perhaps Android). So, where will people actually buy your app? How much will they be willing to pay for your app? What are the costs associated with porting and distributing on the various platforms? How easy will it be to port? Do you have the hardware to test it on these platforms?

With the iPhone it simplifies all of this for the developer. There are only three possible platforms, they all run the same operating system and--outside of GPS--have similar capability. The appstore is centralized between them and iPhone users have already indicated a willingness to pay for apps through that store.

Not to say that you shouldn't port to other platforms, but the questions involved in such are much more in depth than the nearly irrelevant issue of marketshare.

Re:Need a standardized platform! (1)

stewbacca (1033764) | about 6 years ago | (#24540207)

Less storage than a nomad, and all that...

Re:Need a standardized platform! (1)

mdwh2 (535323) | about 6 years ago | (#24544881)

Okay - what's the size of the Iphone market, and how does that compare to say, the number of Java phones?

However many Iphones may have been sold, I think you misunderstand the size of the market. Even compared to just other individual manufacturers, their sales are dwarfed, last time I looked at the figures anyway.

Re:Need a standardized platform! (1)

Yvan256 (722131) | about 6 years ago | (#24537397)

Not only is there a lot of different platforms but also a lot of different hardware. CPUs, CPU speeds, RAM, storage capacity, screen resolutions/color depth, sound/music capabilities, controls/inputs, etc.

Re:Need a standardized platform! (2, Insightful)

BadAnalogyGuy (945258) | about 6 years ago | (#24537435)

Not only is there a lot of different platforms but also a lot of different hardware. CPUs, CPU speeds, RAM, storage capacity, screen resolutions/color depth, sound/music capabilities, controls/inputs, etc.

Conveniently, the word "platform" takes all of that (and more) into account.

Re:Need a standardized platform! (3, Informative)

foniksonik (573572) | about 6 years ago | (#24537449)

How is this different from Desktop Software? It's the same reason I have limited selection of games on my Mac....

Developing for Windows is easy. There is only one platform.

But OS X, Linux and Java are three completely different platforms. That's not to mention BSD, Solaris, even. Developing for an individual Desktop OS is easy, but to reach the entire market, it's very difficult.

------------

Now what you should do as a developer is determine which market segment your software will sell to the best and target the platform that segment uses the most.

Business Users still goes for Windows Mobile (though iPhone rumors persist)... but Blackberry's based on the old OS??? are still out there in force but not for long as their contracts are nearly up and they will upgrade rapidly. Here you're stuck with WinMobile APIs (which are great for some things and poor for others).

Consumers who actually buy and use apps are going for the iPhone (the rest just want a phone that might play mp3s and take pictures). Also the best experience is on the iPhone so if you want people to enjoy using your app.. it's the way to go though you have to know and accept the limitations of the SDK/License (though the SDK is very robust for what it allows you to do).

Developers like the Nokia because it's now running Linux... or later Android when it comes to market. Nokia phones support a wide range of apps with few limitations.

Re:Need a standardized platform! (1)

MoHaG (1002926) | about 6 years ago | (#24537591)

J2ME runs basically anywhere....

Re:Need a standardized platform! (1)

Maxime (1178763) | about 6 years ago | (#24537865)

But with bugs and differences in implementation specific not only to vendors, but to models and even to firmware releases.
Uniformity and standardization aren't even close to what they are for the SDK or the J2EE stack implementations.

The situation is so bad that a consortium of vendors (including sun) came up with the unified testing [javaverified.com] initiative to try to address it.
On mobile platforms, you can forget about "Write once run everywhere".

Re:Need a standardized platform! (1)

Scorchio (177053) | about 6 years ago | (#24537931)

It's been three years since I did any J2ME development, but there was a substantial amount of time devoted to compatibility problems. There was a wide variety of different screen resolutions and storage capacities, then all kinds of idiosyncrasies with how handsets handled screen refresh, button presses, or how they implemented (or didn't implement) various API features.

J2ME apps may run almost everywhere, but often the result was far from ideal without tinkering for individual handsets. Of course, this was a while ago. Maybe life is a little easier now!

Re:Need a standardized platform! (1)

Macrat (638047) | about 6 years ago | (#24539309)

J2ME runs basically anywhere....

Except when it really only runs on the phone the developer had for development.

Re:Need a standardized platform! (1)

puto (533470) | about 6 years ago | (#24540837)

Ahhh, But what about the majority cell phones run Java, while the Iphone does not. Apple likes to keep java off of their devices because they cannot have true control of it. They have done this with the mac for years. So you can develop your app in java and have it run on a slew of phones.

Re:Need a standardized platform! (1)

Cudadown (1341989) | about 6 years ago | (#24545185)

Maybe they keep Java off its products because its crap!

Re:Need a standardized platform! (2, Insightful)

forgoil (104808) | about 6 years ago | (#24540879)

Java/MIDP is far from "one" platform as well. Just the hassle of figuring out what freakin' device an app might work on, and if there is a special version for it, is hell on earth.

Can't stress it enough, the iPhone/iPod Touch platform is golden for developers. Good tools, heterogeneous platform, strong hardware, lots of screen, quite a lot of devices, a huge interest in adding applications, actual performance (most mobile devices have horrid performance, java and native).

I call manager on the whole T-Mobile thing. It really sounds like "they have it, now I wanna have it too" cries from a bunch of babies. I hardly think they know what the heck they are talking about, nor what it takes to bring that to market.

Android could really help here, if they would set the basic specs in a smart way. If they did, they could create a market for apps. An actual market. Not the equivalent of downloading music from Yahoo vs iTunes music store...

Re:Need a standardized platform! (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 6 years ago | (#24544407)

Umm.. am I the only one who realizes that there are already hundreds of places to get Windows Mobile software? Why would anyone need T-Mobile to help them get software for Windows Mobile? I'm pretty sure that blackberry works the same way. Sounds like a desperate T-Mobile is trying to figure out a way to stay competitive. Maybe it's just me, but reproducing what's already out there seems like a bad idea...

Re:Need a standardized platform! (1)

mdwh2 (535323) | about 6 years ago | (#24544869)

Developing for the iPhone is easy. There is only one platform.

But Windows Mobile, Android, and Java are three completely different platforms.

Developing for Windows Mobile is easy. There is only one platform.

Developing for Android is easy. There is only one platform.

Developing for Java is easy. There is only one platform.

Am I missing your point? What's so special about the Iphone?

Re:Need a standardized platform! (1)

BadAnalogyGuy (945258) | about 6 years ago | (#24550973)

Centralized repository of purchasable applications. The others, not so much.

Re:Need a standardized platform! (1)

E IS mC(Square) (721736) | about 6 years ago | (#24548681)

Posting to undo accidental modding.

Will it be in a free data zone? (1)

Joe The Dragon (967727) | about 6 years ago | (#24537365)

Will it be in a free data zone?

I am currently developing an app. (2, Funny)

anomnomnomymous (1321267) | about 6 years ago | (#24537377)

I am in full development for the "I am even richer than those Apple noobs"-application, which can be bought for just $1000.

Re:I am currently developing an app. (1)

jeffb (2.718) (1189693) | about 6 years ago | (#24537407)

I'm developing the "I am somewhat smarter" app, which is just as functional as "I am rich", but can be bought for a mere $100.

Re:I am currently developing an app. (2, Funny)

Fred_A (10934) | about 6 years ago | (#24537445)

My "I am poor" app, which only displays a frayed piece of string will only cell for 5 cents. I expect to sell at least 100 and thus be able to afford some hot soup !

Re:I am currently developing an app. (1)

ilovesymbian (1341639) | about 6 years ago | (#24537489)

I'm developing a "my house got foreclosed" app. Anyone wants to buy it? Only $998.99 please. Sales generated will go to save my house from being foreclosed.

Re:I am currently developing an app. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 6 years ago | (#24538105)

Can I get a no money down loan to buy it please?

Suck up airtime. (1)

BitterOldGUy (1330491) | about 6 years ago | (#24537387)

The platform will be open to "almost any developer" that agrees to T-Mobile's revenue split, which one developer says is "very generous.

So, if I write an app the sucks up a lot of bandwidth and airtime and as a result T-Mobile gets to bill the customer for a lot more money, I make more money?

Re:Suck up airtime. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 6 years ago | (#24537487)

The reverse, according to the article. They will take a greater cut of revenue for streaming apps than for, say, applications which show a picture of a knife and then make a stabbing noise when you shake the phone.

Re:Suck up airtime. (1)

Macrat (638047) | about 6 years ago | (#24539351)

So, if I write an app the sucks up a lot of bandwidth and airtime and as a result T-Mobile gets to bill the customer for a lot more money, I make more money?

T-Mobile's data plan is flat rate.

I Am Rich app on T-Mobile App Store (0, Redundant)

beewulf (1341391) | about 6 years ago | (#24537391)

How long until someone develops the I Am Rich app on T-Mobile store? :)

Android (1)

Eccles (932) | about 6 years ago | (#24537411)

So what's the current perception of Android? The system of the future, or another Linux -- useful and powerful in its niche, but not the dominant platform?

Re:Android (1)

ilovesymbian (1341639) | about 6 years ago | (#24537451)

I'm really waiting for the Android, there's no doubt it will be one with the masses, just like Google is.

I'm really tired of having these different Win Mobile, OS X, Symbian platforms on different phones. And then, the MIDP gets really tiring after a few apps.

Re:Android (3, Insightful)

RetroRichie (259581) | about 6 years ago | (#24537501)

Google has really executed one thing successfully: search. You and I both know that Gmail is fantastic, but it's not "one with the masses" as another poster alludes to. I can't believe Android is going to be successful. Even if you take out their inability to execute on new products, they are way late to the party.

Re:Android (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 6 years ago | (#24537645)

Google has really executed one thing successfully: search. You and I both know that Gmail is fantastic, but it's not "one with the masses" as another poster alludes to. I can't believe Android is going to be successful. Even if you take out their inability to execute on new products, they are way late to the party.

You don't have a clue about anything we're talking about, do you?

Re:Android (1)

TubeSteak (669689) | about 6 years ago | (#24539015)

I can't believe Android is going to be successful. Even if you take out their inability to execute on new products, they are way late to the party.

It doesn't have to be successful in the USA.

Maybe it'll take Europe or Asia by storm and then the USA will be the feeling left behind and "late to the party".

Re:Android (1)

tyrione (134248) | about 6 years ago | (#24542209)

I can't believe Android is going to be successful. Even if you take out their inability to execute on new products, they are way late to the party.

It doesn't have to be successful in the USA.

Maybe it'll take Europe or Asia by storm and then the USA will be the feeling left behind and "late to the party".

With the massive listing of iPhone countries expanding throughtout Europe, South America, Asia, Africa, North America I doubt Apple is worried about it being successful.

If their actions up to now are an indication... (3, Insightful)

Junta (36770) | about 6 years ago | (#24537629)

Android is in trouble wrt to fulfilling the hope of an 'open' platform. So far:

-We still know next to nothing about the current state of their development situation. The M5 SDK released all the way back in March is the latest hard technical resource people have without an NDA. Meanwhile, Google is refreshing the SDK for the cherry-picked few (http://groups.google.com/group/android-developers/browse_thread/thread/f031c33fe9e5b992).
For a platform trying to leverage a large development community, they sure are making it hard for those people.
-The bits we do have come without platform source. There seems to be a good chance Google might keep their middleware closed-source. Otherwise, why be so secretive about it even today?

So far we've seen promise of being open falling through to date, we've seen the supposed source of strength of android (the community), hamstringed by Google's own actions. I've seen promises of 'once the phone is on the market, we'll make good!', but I fail to see why they can't allow the SDK to be in public hands because of that excuse.

Then we have LiMo, which so far looks not to be user-centered, and more cell-phone manufacturer centered, so I'd not expect that to change the world significantly.

The *only* platform that so far in spirit lives up to those promises is OpenMoko. Unfortunately, the 'best' platform for it (FreeRunner) is a tad underpowered technically.

Re:If their actions up to now are an indication... (2, Insightful)

mmurphy000 (556983) | about 6 years ago | (#24538739)

For a platform trying to leverage a large development community, they sure are making it hard for those people.

Undoubtedly a bizarre move, though I have issues with who you probably have as the "they" in that sentence — see below.

The bits we do have come without platform source.

You mean, like this?

http://code.google.com/p/android/source/checkout [google.com]

I'm under the impression not all bits are there, but it's enough to get Android running (sometimes poorly) on various HTC handsets, Nokia N8xx devices, etc.

So far we've seen promise of being open falling through to date, we've seen the supposed source of strength of android (the community), hamstringed by Google's own actions.

You keep blaming Google, yet you have supplied no evidence that they're really the ones at fault.

Remember that Android is a product of the Open Handset Alliance. There's a whole lotta firms in that group, including some fairly big names. While it is eminently possible the problem starts and stops with Google, it could be some coalition within Open Handset Alliance that has put the screws to the process, for whatever reason.

That doesn't mean it's not bad. But, if you're going to cast blame at specific firms, it'd be nifty if you had more evidence that the firm is the one truly deserving of the blame.

I've seen promises of 'once the phone is on the market, we'll make good!', but I fail to see why they can't allow the SDK to be in public hands because of that excuse.

Maybe they're worried about the support burden and the subsequent pressure on deadlines — ask any decent-sized open source project about what happens when a highly-publicized update is released. Maybe somebody in the Alliance demanded that updates be curtailed so Alliance developers could get a leg up on getting their own applications built — bad, mind you, but not necessarily Google's idea.

Again, the silence is bad, but it's an annoying sort of bad, not a "the sky is falling! the sky is falling!" sort of bad. Yet. Now, if they miss their 2008 Q4 target, or if they make it and the platform isn't as open as originally proclaimed, then people have a right to get royally pissed, just as they're getting pissed at Apple for throwing its weight around in the App Store more than might seem warranted. Right now is a fine time to be skeptical of whether Android will be as open as we want, but too soon to say it is not going to happen.

Nokia App Store? (3, Interesting)

PolygamousRanchKid (1290638) | about 6 years ago | (#24537455)

So I wonder what Nokia will have to offer in the way of an App Store in a couple of months when I plan to replace my N90 with an N96. Ideally, I'd like to be able to download stuff from http://maemo.org/ [maemo.org] , just like for my N800.

But, no, that would be dreaming.

Re:Nokia App Store? (0, Flamebait)

Ilgaz (86384) | about 6 years ago | (#24537749)

Did you use Maeomo to install apps/themes? If they won't change how theme works on Symbian or freely get those Apps signed, I am not installing anything unless I buy a full feature Symbian antivirus like Kaspersky. It made me really really paranoid here. It is also because a "theme" comes with a sis/sisx installer in Symbian scene. Not like .thm which is simply a tar.gz file on Sony Ericsson scene. How the hell I am supposed to know if that .sisx doesn't include some "extras" ?

Everything is either unsigned, self signed or plain "expired certificate". We should be also trusting to MCafee I think, they have some logo there.. Like MCafee has any expertise or prestige in handheld market like F-Secure or Kaspersky does.

I wouldn't be really surprised if T-Mobile does same mistakes.

Re:Nokia App Store? (1)

crunzh (1082841) | about 6 years ago | (#24544475)

Nokia allready have a appstore, check the download! app on your phone... Its not very good...

Operator run "App Stores" already exist (5, Insightful)

@madeus (24818) | about 6 years ago | (#24537477)

Cruder (mostly web based) implementations of the iPhones "App Store" already exist with other operators.

I know that Vodafone, for example, distribute an application on their branded S60 Nokia phones that links to a small portal site, where you can read news and buy access to premium content, including TV shows and games.

The application is a small web based one and doesn't have feature the "App Store" has such as the ability to track updates for applications nor does it recognize if you've already made a purchase. I don't recall seeing any significant free applications on their either, almost all the applications were games from major publishers (e.g. branded as EA or Sega titles) and most were consistently priced.

For me, a major strength of the App Store is that it has a wide range of applications at a range of price points and from a range of developers - I think that's what attracts so many people to it.

I think mobile operators will struggle to understand the importance of having a wide range of applications (including free ones) and they will continue to take a short sighted view of focusing on doing business with major publishers like EA at the expense of independent developers - pushing to the market what they mistakenly think people want - ultimately to their own detriment.

So far, I've spent about 25 GBP on the App Store since July I've bought a couple of apps at about 5 GBP, one at about 10 GBP and a few at between 50p to 1.50 GBP. I'm sure I will buy more. I've been with Vodafone for about 8 years, and in that time only bought two applications from them (both games, at around 2.50-4.50 each I think).

I don't think mobile operators understand the importance of good software enough to replicate the success of the App Store on other devices. If good software was important to them there wouldn't have been a gap big enough for Apple to exploit in the first place.

Re:Operator run "App Stores" already exist (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 6 years ago | (#24537971)

You are dead on about operators having a short sighted view.

Developers will submit their applications online; the revenue-share agreement will be based on how much the application uses the network;...

How many times have we seen operators trying to dictate on how and/or nickel-and-dimed their customers using the network. Instead of selling the applications based on the developers' effort to create them and how much customers think is a fair price, they use a different metric: bandwidth usage. Don't users already pay for the bandwidth when they sign up for a data plan? Decent apps could be expensive and sidelined because they use "too much" network resources; thus, developers must strike a balance on how much their apps should have network access and the price customers are willing to pay for reduced functionality.

Re:Operator run "App Stores" already exist (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 6 years ago | (#24549577)

For me, a major strength of the App Store is that it has a wide range of applications at a range of price points and from a range of developers - I think that's what attracts so many people to it.

Badger: Oh we have a range of options.
Customer: Do you have Opera?
Badger: Not available.
Customer: Do you have a P2P app?
Badger: Nuh uh.
Customer: How about a VoIP app I can use on my 3G connection?
Badger: Sorry.
Customer: Well, what do you have?
Badger: Oh we have a range of options.

If you don't get the joke... [youtube.com]

Anyone tried Skype/Gizmo on Pocket PC + 3G? (1)

@madeus (24818) | about 6 years ago | (#24550471)

You mock, but have you checked out the operator run "App Store" equivalents?

They consist of primarily rubbish mobile versions of established titles by EA - who even managed to screw up something as simple as Tetris royally with numerous bugs - and direct ports of old 16 bit games that are totally unsuited to being played on most phones.

If you want non-lowest-common-denominator software like Opera or a VoIP app you'll usually have to download that yourself on you computer - unlike with Apple they are not interested in distributing applications that don't have an upfront cost they can take a cut of and in dealing with major publishers who they can form "strategic partnerships".

There is nothing to stop Opera, P2P software or a VoIP app being written for the iPhone, in fact IIRC Apple have confirmed the latter as being in the works - although the chances of a VoIP app that works over 3G as well as WiFi appearing on the App Store are not much above nill I would imagine.

Having used VoIP over 3G with iChat and Gizmo, with a Nokia E60/E61i* and N95 on Vodafone 3G, it's not something I'd even be interested in, the sound quality really was awful and the delay was significant (as bad as with a portable sat phone).

My 3G modem (on Three) is alright for VoIP, even for a camera, if I'm in an area with good reception, but that that's with the laptop doing the encoding and decoding, and the 3G modem gets better reception than my phone (not least because I'm not covering it with my hands while I'm using it).

I haven't had a Pocket PC in a while, so I don't know what Skype is like over 3G on a Windows Mobile Smartphone. I'd be interested in hearing what the call quality is like from someone who has tried that. I am curious if part of the problem on the Nokia is the performance of the encoding/decoding being limited by the hardware.

* Can't remember which one I was using at the time.

Why Would I Give T-mobile Money (1)

essinger (781940) | about 6 years ago | (#24537539)

If I develop an app for WinMo I can sell it to anyone with a WinMo phone and keep ALL the money. Unless T-Mobile is going start locking their phones from outside apps ala iPhone, why would I want to just give T-Mobile some of my money?

Re:Why Would I Give T-mobile Money (1)

byolinux (535260) | about 6 years ago | (#24537577)

I think the idea is that its more convenient this way, but you're right... I also really hope they don't "pull an Apple" on this.

Re:Why Would I Give T-mobile Money (0, Troll)

Cudadown (1341989) | about 6 years ago | (#24545247)

"pull an Apple"? Like 1000+ apps. All of which seem to run flawlessly. Half of which are completely free. All install seemlessly. And run on the device that Google claims is responsible for 70% of its mobile web traffic (meaning, a smart mobile device that can really be used for once)? T-Mobile would be friggin lucky it it created anything remotely similar to Apple.

Re:Why Would I Give T-mobile Money (1)

byolinux (535260) | about 6 years ago | (#24546231)

and how do I get an application from my own server onto an iPhone?

I don't want to go through Apple. Also, I want to release my application as free software under the GPL, so anyone getting my application needs to be able to modify it and load their modified version onto their phone too.

And blam, can't do that with an iPhone.

Entry barrier for Windows Mobile vs. iPhone (0, Troll)

tepples (727027) | about 6 years ago | (#24538139)

If I develop an app for WinMo I can sell it to anyone with a WinMo phone and keep ALL the money.

But surprisingly, the entry barrier appears to be slightly higher with Windows Mobile software than with iPhone software. In addition to the roughly $400 handheld device (Pocket PC or iPod Touch), you have to buy a compatible computer and a copy of the development software. For Windows, this is a $600 Windows PC incl. keyboard, mouse, and monitor, and a $1,000 copy of Visual Studio (not the Express version, which doesn't target Windows Mobile). For iPhone, this is a $1,100 iMac and a $100 SDK activation for your device.

Re:Entry barrier for Windows Mobile vs. iPhone (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 6 years ago | (#24538549)

If I develop an app for WinMo I can sell it to anyone with a WinMo phone and keep ALL the money.

But surprisingly, the entry barrier appears to be slightly higher with Windows Mobile software than with iPhone software. In addition to the roughly $400 handheld device (Pocket PC or iPod Touch), you have to buy a compatible computer and a copy of the development software. For Windows, this is a $600 Windows PC incl. keyboard, mouse, and monitor, and a $1,000 copy of Visual Studio (not the Express version, which doesn't target Windows Mobile). For iPhone, this is a $1,100 iMac and a $100 SDK activation for your device.

$1000 copy of Visual Studio?

http://msdn.microsoft.com/en-us/vs2008/products/cc263904.aspx

Visual Studio 2008 Standard Edition $299 or for an upgrade $199

Plus not only that, you're working from the assumption that the user doesn't have a computer.

If they have a windows pc, they buy Visual studio for $299 or even your imgaginary $1000, that's it.

If they have a Mac, they run boot camp, buy a copy of windows xp/vista and a copy of visual studio.

See that doesn't work the other way around, if you have a non Apple computer, you *HAVE* to buy hardware.

Re:Entry barrier for Windows Mobile vs. iPhone (2, Interesting)

essinger (781940) | about 6 years ago | (#24538801)

Dude, it's even cheaper than the other reply says. If Microsft finds out you are a developer they will send you all the shit you need FOR FREE. They've given me three copies of Vista Ultimate, a copy of server 2008 enterprise, a couple copies of visual studio pro, a copy of the mobile development kit, and a couple copies of SQL server.

Re:Entry barrier for Windows Mobile vs. iPhone (1)

essinger (781940) | about 6 years ago | (#24539419)

I did have to attend a microsoft pep rally for some of that. So only sorta free.

Re:Entry barrier for Windows Mobile vs. iPhone (1)

Yvan256 (722131) | about 6 years ago | (#24538975)

Replace that $1100 iMac with a $599 Mac mini. Buy RAM, monitor, keyboard and mouse from a local shop, install yourself. Total price: a lot less than $1100.

Sidekick? (1)

HyoImowano (761382) | about 6 years ago | (#24537587)

The Sidekick platform has had it's own proprietary app store with this type of revenue sharing scheme for quite a few years now, possibly since the platform was released.

The secret of success (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 6 years ago | (#24537607)

Be a middleman.

Re:The secret of success (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 6 years ago | (#24537921)

Let me fix that for you.

1. Hire people in 3rd world countries to make hardware and allow anyone else to program for it.
2. ???
3. Profit!

Re:The secret of success (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 6 years ago | (#24538267)

Nope. T-Mobile is looking to be between programmers and customers. This has nothing to do with hardware.

Re:The secret of success (1)

marklar1 (670468) | about 6 years ago | (#24539391)

THANK YOU! just what I was thinking. I don't want T-mobile in between me and shopping for apps to run on my next phone.

I want to buy hardware from a vendor that will support it, have firmware and software updates, etc.--treating me as their end customer. (no ridiculous replays of the AT&T Tilt imageon driver debacle). Currently, once you've got a phone out the door they don't want to service you, they'd rather you just buy a new phone w/ XYZ feature, fix, update, because the service providers are the hardware manufacturers customer before the end user.

I want to control the software I install on it, as I'm used to with other computers.

I want a fair contract, without subsidizing my phone, to operate on from a service provider...period.

If the app store is optional, not mandatory, then great. But if T-Mobile wants to control the end users / platform across all their phones as Apple tries to do then I'll look for alternatives.

They've been doing it for years (2, Interesting)

Sir Holo (531007) | about 6 years ago | (#24537643)

Haven't the cell providers already been trying to sell extra apps for years? Mostly games. How many un-erase-able demos are on your cell phone?

Apple has opened the floodgates in yet another market. Delivering to customers what they actually want, instead of what some misguided "marketing" department would prefer to force down their throats.

Re:They've been doing it for years (1)

BSDetector (1056962) | about 6 years ago | (#24539345)

Except if the Lord Jobs deems that it is something that Apple doesn't want! If that's the case you never actually wanted it either!

You're right; they are (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 6 years ago | (#24540215)

Hi, I'm quite an happy T-Mobile customer from the Netherlands and I guess that might be the difference here. Still; when I point my Samsung Soul to goto T-Zones [t-zones.nl] (the T-Mobile internet "zone") I have several options to get ringtones, games and such. Just look at the website: "Wat is het? t-zones: dat is sport, muziek, games, nieuws, weer en files op jouw mobiel". So: "What is it? t-zones: that is sport, music, games, news, weather and files on your mobile (phone)".

So in that aspect I agree; nothing new to see here.

Re:They've been doing it for years (1)

mdwh2 (535323) | about 6 years ago | (#24544897)

Delivering to customers what they actually want, instead of what some misguided "marketing" department would prefer to force down their throats.

Yet everytime I ask about a missing feature (MMS, copy/paste, Java, video recording, until recently 3G), I'm told "Why would you want to do that?" The point is clear - what I want is irrelevant. I'd have to go "Oh, I can't do that - I'm an Apple user". Sure, there are nifty things about the Iphone too, but it's not clear to me that they are putting control into the hands of the users. On the contrary, they withhold features thinking that they know better, and that the user should not need them.

Sounds like Nokia (2, Interesting)

Ilgaz (86384) | about 6 years ago | (#24537709)

Nokia started a weird campaign promoting its "Download!" making even die-hard Symbian blogs mad. Why? Because it is not really timely co-ordinated campaign and we (Nokia users) still see 10-15 never updated, never changed stuff in "Download!" menu in our phones.

Check news about it: http://www.allaboutsymbian.com/news/item/7743_Secret_really_is_a_secret.php [allaboutsymbian.com]

Nokia sits there, look for some great open source/free applications shipped for Symbian, doesn't freely sign them or cover their signing costs, donate to authors, help them, at least put the s60.com apps to the menu.

All they do is some good graphics wallpaper and application. Yea, race with Apple this way... They don't even put "Opera" and "Fring" to "Internet" category, 2 apps which will never ship for Apple iPhone (with this SDK/EULA) for God's sake.

Re:Sounds like Nokia (0, Troll)

WiiVault (1039946) | about 6 years ago | (#24539733)

Fring is availible for iPhone.

Re:Sounds like Nokia (1)

Ilgaz (86384) | about 6 years ago | (#24540707)

On hacked iPhone. Not official iPhone. A big difference. You should see how convenient it is to install on a Nokia or any phone which doesn't have such foolish restrictions. One click from browser,that is all.

They have such a client, guys already got certified by Symbian and yet they only put "Gizmo" to download menu. Now they advertise that junk which they wasted for years without any change in policy. That was my point.

Re:Sounds like Nokia (0, Troll)

WiiVault (1039946) | about 6 years ago | (#24540995)

You are right about that, sorry for not making the distinction- I spaced-out on that one. Still Fring is coming to the App Store according to the devs and nothing in the SDK should prevent it from doing so.

already full of fail (1, Insightful)

Aggrav8d (683620) | about 6 years ago | (#24538079)

"the revenue-share agreement will be based on how much the application uses the network" So... the more popular my app, the more $ t-mobile keeps? how the hell is that fair when t-mobile customers are (probably) paying per byte already?

Re:already full of fail (2, Informative)

Constantine XVI (880691) | about 6 years ago | (#24538247)

No, they're basing the cut on how data-heavy your app is, not the number of people using it. So, T-Mobile would take a smaller cut from GTalk, and a bigger cut from SlingPlayer. The number of users is irrelevant. Also, all of T-Mobile's data plans (from the $6 tZones to the $20 BIS and "Total Internet") are unlimited. If you don't have a data plan, then it is by usage.

Re:already full of fail (1)

marklar1 (670468) | about 6 years ago | (#24539427)

exactly.

this doesn't bode well for developers selling applications direcltly, and would indicate somehow t-mobile will apply some leverage or control so that developers have to go through them..

so why am I getting an unlimited data plan if I can't run what I want on it.

looks like t-mobile is off the short list of my next possible provider.

My App (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 6 years ago | (#24538097)

Planning on making my own "I am Rich" app with plans for additional releases ... "I am Very Rich", and only for the elite ... "I am Extremely Rich".

Pricing will follow an exponential scale.

May also open source a scaled down "I am poor" version.

Called it! (1)

Bladesonfire (1242646) | about 6 years ago | (#24538483)

I'm making the first "I'm Middle-Class" app. It'll have a picture of an iPhone with a picture of a ruby on it and will sell for $9.99. After 100 purchases, I'll finally be able to buy that coveted "I Am Rich" app!

T-mobile blocks java apps (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 6 years ago | (#24539077)

T mobile blocks Java apps from being able to access the network. Programs like Opera do not work on many of the phones they sell.

http://my.opera.com/community/forums/topic.dml?id=244612
and
http://my.opera.com/community/forums/topic.dml?id=243169

And no it cant be changed via the setting as T-mobile has that locked out also....
Gee thanks tmobile nice sales job,

Buy something that does not work because that phone company disables the functionality

Re:T-mobile blocks java apps (1, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | about 6 years ago | (#24539993)

No! It depends on your rate plan. If you have a suitable data plan/addon then you can acess the internet from any application (otherwise, access is limited to whitelisted t-zones IP's) AFAIK, the $5/mo mobile web addon used to allow full access to the web. Now you need the $20/mo addon.

Open? (1)

Aladrin (926209) | about 6 years ago | (#24540583)

Yes, but will it be 'open'? Will I be able to use the SDK for their platform to create free apps and distribute them however I like, or will I be forced to use their store, just like Apple's offering?

I'm only interested in programming for a platform that I can distribute for as I see fit.

As for the 'how much it uses the internet' bit... Cripes, don't the customers already pay for that? Taking money from the developer AND the consumer is just... Wrong. I could understand it if they offered decently priced 'unlimited' internet, but they don't. The closest is the 'web only' for like $6.

Need a standardized platform! (1)

clint999 (1277046) | about 6 years ago | (#24542431)

J2ME runs basically anywhere....
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