There will be no opportunities for third parties to develop applications for the iPhone, but Apple has confirmed that it has plans to develop the functionality of the iPhone further.
Greg Joswiak, Apple’s vice president of worldwide iPod marketing, has confirmed that while the company is encouraging third parties to design peripherals for the iPhone, as is the case with the iPod, “There is no opportunity right now for third party development”. He told Macworld: “Right now the opportunities are limited to the accessory market.”
Apple will issue guidelines by the end of the month to developers wishing to design such items. Joswiak emphasised that there is a catch to developing for the iPhone. "There can be radiated or conducted noise from the phone and if you haven’t shielded your product correctly then your speakers will be affected", Joswiak explained.
"We will be giving our developers technical information by the end of next month that will outline those extra requirements. We’ll work with our developers to make sure that the products are properly shielded."
This does not mean that companies are exempt from approaching Apple with ideas for applications for the iPhone. Joswiak emphasized that Apple has already worked in partnership with both Google and Yahoo on such applications, but essentially it will always be Apple who releases the software.
Joswiak also emphasized that Apple would not rule out any further development of software for the iPhone, on the contrary, the design of the iPhone opens up many avenues for further development. “We can end up doing whatever we choose to do because the iPhone is not limited by a set of keys that might make sense for some applications but not for others,” he said, echoing Apple CEO Steve Jobs who criticized current SmartPhone design for including keys embedded in plastic that often don’t suit the application being accessed. Joswiak added that Apple has the infrastructure to issue updated applications, and updates to those applications.
One application that may be in the pipeline is a task organizer. Joswiak commented: “We haven’t yet announced a task organizer,” when quizzed about future applications. In order to compete in the SmartPhone space Apple would be wise to offer some Office-style applications. There have been suggestions that the next iWorks update – which was notable by its absence from the keynote – may filter through to the iPhone.
This is one in a series of five articles featuring comment from Apple about the iPhone. Read more here: