Third Party Apps Coming Back To The iPhone In February, But Are Limited In Nature

Posted Oct 18, 2007

“Let me just say it: We want native third party applications on the iPhone, and we plan to have an SDK in developersâ?? hands in February. We are excited about creating a vibrant third party developer community around the iPhone and enabling hundreds of new applications for our users.”
-Steve Jobs, CEO of Apple Inc.

It seems like that the core demographic of Apple products revolves around those who truly spend a great deal of time surfing the Internet, developing applications, and work with various forms of graphic communications.  Because Apple’s demographics are very tech-savvy, hackers spend a great deal of time working with Apple products.  When the iPhone came out, hackers made it a project or a goal to discover its security flaws.  And many of these hackers were annoyed by the fact that the iPhone was limited to only AT&T customers, so hackers from all over the world sought a way to make the iPhone compatible with their telecommunications providers.

Apple responded by banning all independent third party applications after users updated to Apple iTunes Firmware 1.1.1.  This software essentially detected which iPhones were tampered with and made them no more useful than a brick, hence the nickname iBrick.  Apple fan- boys and girls across the nation were not pleased.  And Gizmodo even told its readers not to buy the iPhone.  Third party applications are what made the iPhone so intriguing and unique.

Ever since the banning of the third party applications, Steve Jobs was pressured to conform to meet the demands of the Apple fan- boys and girls or risk a loss of sales.  Therefore, Apple announced yesterday that they plan to release a Software Developer Kit (SDK) by February. 

“It will take until February to release an SDK because weâ??re trying to do two diametrically opposed things at onceâ??provide an advanced and open platform to developers while at the same time protect iPhone users from viruses, malware, privacy attacks, etc. This is no easy task. Some claim that viruses and malware are not a problem on mobile phonesâ??this is simply not true. There have been serious viruses on other mobile phones already, including some that silently spread from phone to phone over the cell network. As our phones become more powerful, these malicious programs will become more dangerous. And since the iPhone is the most advanced phone ever, it will be a highly visible target,” added Jobs in his letter.

There is even a list of top web apps for the iPhone to show how serious Apple is about allowing third parties once again.  And when the SDK in February lands, we’ll find out what the limitations are for open source third party apps.