updated 02:15 pm EST, Fri January 29, 2010
MS claims iPhone, iPad devs make no money
The iPad is limited because it doesn't use an 'open' developer environment, Microsoft platform project manager Brandon Watson has said in an interview. He believes that iPhone, iPod and now iPad developers aren't making money because they can only write to a single platform and can't necessarily build what they want with the available toolkit. To him, .NET is superior to the iPhone's Objective C since it's more often used and can be used to write across both computers and Windows Mobile.
"It is a humorous world in how Microsoft is much more open than Apple," Watson told Technologizer.
The remarks are at least partly inaccurate. Objective C is also used for Mac OS X development and in many cases shares similar standards. While .NET is useful on both desktop Windows and Windows Mobile, the latter has to use a special .NET Compact framework to accommodate the handheld platform's limitations. Also, the Zune HD is so far a closed platform and doesn't allow third parties to independently write and submit apps.
In practice, Windows Mobile's less strict management has yet to directly translate to improved sales as the platform currently has significantly fewer apps and an accordingly lower number of high profile, strong-selling apps. Developers such as Demiforce, Smule and Tapulous have also become successful and allowed for full-time iPhone development.
Nokia has also objected and wrote today that it believes Apple is inaccurate when it claims to be the largest mobile device company in the world by revenue. The company's Mark Squires tries to exclude notebooks from the category and believes that its $11.4 billion in revenue for phones and services like Ovi makes it larger. He also notes that Nokia overwhelms Apple in sheer unit numbers as it shipped 52.4 million phones in just the last quarter, or several times Apple's iPhone and iPod numbers.
Nokia's comments appear to be largely accurate as well: it does have a numerical advantage in smartphones at 20.8 million, although here it's excluding categories where Apple has a clear advantage, such as in notebooks or the iTunes Store. So far, Nokia has only the Booklet 3G as a notebook and rolls virtually all its services into Ovi, including apps and media.