I came across this story this morning on PC World, and it stirred my own frustration with Apple. Web apps have their place and, truth be told, developers have found very clever ways to extend the genre, but I and every iPhone user on this hemisphere want the same thing - native application support!
What aggravates me further is that Apple does in fact have plans to open its platform. A friend of mine at Yahoo even informed me some time ago that they are currently working on their own native software for iPhone as we speak. So the question is...when will Steve Jobs unlock the backyard gate and let developers into his walled garden?
My suspicion is that a planned rollout is due to take place sometime in late Q4 to coincide with the release of Leopard, the next version of OSX. That day can't come soon enough for me, but the problem is that when the moment does arrive it will be a point of embarkation, not a destination. In other words it will take developers months to study APIs and begin writing applications.
As someone who comes from an extensive Smartphone background, I relish productivity applications that form the basis of mobile computing. As it stands now, iPhone is like a high performance racing engine -it's faster and more powerful than anything else on the road but it can't go anywhere but on a racetrack. Every time I interact with my iPhone I feel as though I'm hitting a virtual brick wall. I keep wanting the device to do more than what it offers me. From day one I learned to accept the software limitations with an understanding that someday more applications would arrive, extending my user experience. With iPhone hype dying down, now is the time for Apple to create another spark by turning its product into a platform.
It's your move, Steve. We're waiting.