Tuesday, September 16, 2008

App Store Blogstorm

So there is this kerfuffle regarding the App store.  On the one hand we have Gruber.  Defender of the liberal arts and on the other Mike Arrington of Tech Crunch defender of well gravity.
Gruber/Arrington make very different arguments so you would think that they could not both be right but they are.  The thing that makes this argument cool is that we are free to assign whatever motive we want to Apple since we have no way to know what really happened.

Gruber is right, Gruber is Always right (Daring Fireball.net )

It’d be different if Apple had published an explicit rule stating, for example, that podcasting apps are prohibited. But there is no such guideline. Podcaster seems to fully comply with Apple’s published guidelines, and yet it was rejected for violating a secret rule....

The point is not that Apple can’t reject apps arbitrarily. They can. Elsewhere in the SDK Agreement is a more or less wildcard clause that grants Apple the right to reject apps — and remove apps which were previously accepted — for whatever reasons it chooses. The point isn’t about what Apple can do but what they should do.

And they shouldn’t be doing this. 

Gruber gets hot about an issue once every couple of weeks and lets fly all of his substantial edumicated smoothyness.   Slick awsome and right.  He represents that part of us for the world as we would like it to be.  He is hopeful, but unyielding and ultimately willing to make a go/no go decision based on something that is a poor compromise.

The fact is that there are more than twelve million iPhones in people’s hands today, and another800,000 or so are likely sold each week. That is too much of an opportunity to pass up. Developers will complain, but ultimately they’ll play by whatever rules Apple demands. Even if those rules are ambiguous and subject to change regularly without notice.
Arrington is right, I mean he is seriously correct.  This is what will happen.  I like Arrington too, it's just that I don't want to agree with him.  He is drive, ambition, business everything I admire in someone that likely feeds his family.

The downside of Arrington's argument is that it means we live in that world that is not fair, where we don't necessarily like the choices we have at any given time.  There is this MBA/Machiavelli thing that while right is a little to grown up.  
(Daniel Dilger is involved in the argument too but besides being pedantic I don't think I like him and three ways are sooo confusing)

As an aside.  The App store continues to Explode with Apps.  Four Hundred have been added since last weeks iPod show (3405 current total). Including todays release of The Force Unleashed.  This is the first release on the App store by THQ and further evidence that the iPhone/iPod Touch are going to be taken VERY seriously as a gaming device.

Update:  Fake Steve Jobs Weighs in at his lucid best: Blow Blogstorm Blowww.


Anonymous said...

It seems to me that a potential explanation for Apple's behavior is being ignored. Unlike YouTube, Podcaster offers to queue downloads of large files over the 3G network presenting potential bandwidth problems. Unlike internet radio apps, Podcaster offers to transfer files to the iPhone. Unlike FileMagnet and Air Sharing which advertise themselves as offering to transfer files from the users computer to the iPhone, Podcaster offers to transfer files from some unknown server where a third party blog is stored to the iPhone. For Apple this may represent a pontential security issue. John Q. User may perceive no difference between downloading a podcast blog from the iTunes Music Store, where it has been tested and found free of malware before being offered to the public, and 'Bob's Bait and Switch Blog' which, intentionally or not, contains code that sends the user's financial or personal info off to the Russian mob. The resulting headlines will not read 'Podcast User's Plagued by Malware' but rather 'Internet Virus Steals Apple iPhone User's Bank Accounts.'

BnVested said...

Good Point Michael.

AT&T usage concerns maybe valid but malware would be a red herring. For myself I think Apple is acting in what it thinks is its best interest by protecting the iTunes franchise.