Former Palm exec: Apple’s iPhone Software Roadmap makes other mobile platforms look pretty pathetic

“Overall, it is deeply impressive how many things Apple got right [with their iPhone/iPod touch SDK],” Michael Mace blogs for Mobile Opportunity.

MacDailyNews Note: Michael Mace is a principal at Rubicon Consulting, and former Chief Competitive Officer and VP of Product Planning at Palm, former VP of Strategic Marketing at PalmSource, and former director of Mac Platform Marketing at Apple.

Mace writes, “We still need to see more details on terms and conditions, and a lot will depend on Apple’s execution, but here are the problems they appear to have solved:”

• Making mobile applications easy for users to find and install
• Not taking too large a cut from developers for their third party app store
• Streamlining the app certification process
• Exposing a very deep and rich API set
• Kleiner Perkins’ $100 million venture iFund for iPhone developers. “Makes Google’s $10m contest for Android developers look like a popgun.”

“It has been obvious for at least six years that all of these changes were needed in the mobile market, but until now no one in the US and Europe has had the courage / political muscle / intelligence to carry them all out. The other mobile platforms now look pretty pathetic by comparison,” Mace writes.

“Nokia seems to be focused on a strategic positioning activity around seeing who can collect the most runtimes, while Apple is solving real developer and user problems,” Mace writes. “It’s a striking contrast.”

“Right now Apple is changing the terms of the competition faster than the other guys can react, which is exactly the right way to beat a group of larger competitors,” Mace writes.

More in the full article – recommended – here.


  1. all they need to do know is release a related piece of hardware that most people didn’t see coming, and release it within the next 6 months.

    nano phone, touch tablet, whatever, just something closely related that will add even more momentum in the consumers eyes. end game.

  2. And we all know which camp Zune Tang”™” is in with his Windows Mobile Media device: the “pretty pathetic” camp. In fact, with his rah-rah Gates/Ballmer brown-nosin’ fanboi-ism one could call him the Champion of Pretty Pathetic!

    Of course, we’ve known this for years and years. This is just the latest affirmation.

    — Hano

  3. @shen,
    Actually, I think you’re pretty much correct. A related piece of hardware that could share the resulting iPhone apps would just add more momentum to a new mobile platform ‘standard’. And ‘Afib’, yes, it could result in an endgame to this round of defining the new standard for portable computing. These things do have eras that are ruled by the winner of the previous era’s game. Microsoft and Nokia ruled the previous game. The new game is turning into a rout for Apple.

  4. All this “the competition won’t know what hit ’em” nonsense is pretty hilarious. Don’t forget Microsoft still has the revolutionary Windows Mobile and the marvelous Zune up their sleeve. You MAC lemmings seriously think Redmond can’t put the two together and destroy Crapple once and for all?

    One more element you MAC sheep are forgetting is Microsoft is great at partnerships. How about this formula: ZunePhone + Verizon = a behemoth to be reckoned with.

    And don’t get me started on the “Apple is solving real developer and user problems” garbage. Puh-leeeeeeze. Microsoft did that years ago. That’s the real end game.

    Your potential. Our passion.™

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