I have two friends who went the iPhone route, and when we go out for our Friday night coffee gatherings, they have their smartphones downloading Apps (software for mobile devices) the whole night. I never really understood the craze with Apps. On my current Windows Mobile 6.1 phone, it has Mobile Office and an Adobe Reader built in, which pretty much covers my need for Apps.
The only Apps I installed are because of deficiencies in my phone. Since, the Internet Explorer browser of Windows Mobile is not a good browser, I downloaded an Opera Browser. I do not use MS Office, having used OpenOffice now for 8 years, and unfortunately my Windows Mobile Phone is not Windows Vista compatible for back-up purposes, it sync's only with MS Outlook and not Vista's Calendar and Contacts (my older Nokie E61i syncs with Vista's Calendar and Contacts). So I downloaded a program that will back-up my calendar and contacts. Finally, since my phone is prone to connect to the internet without asking me, I installed nodata to be able to control this behavior.
In short, the only thing I really need in a Smartphone is a way to get my email and an Office Suite. My other App's simply make up for the shortcomings of Windows Mobile. So what is this thing about Apps.
So taking control of my friend iPhone, I did some App exploration. Okay, I am not big into games, but I do understand the games. I tried Angry Bird's and a counterstrike looking game on an iPhone. These touchscreen phones make nice handheld gaming platforms. Reading recipes from a cookbook... I do not care how good the screen is, that is something I would rather do with a Notebook or Tablet (and press print). I do not see myself manipulating my Php40K device near a hot stove. The rest look like toys so that you have something to do with your expensive new touchscreen toy. An App that distorts faces, a robot that reacts to voice commands, this flashlight apps that turns your screen bright white, a Sexy girl that reacts too... okay that one maybe I need.
But that is where the business is this days. I wonder whether Apple makes more money from selling iPhones of from the 300,000 Apps in the online store. These Apps runs on the iPad too, but there is also an App Store for programs designed for the iPad. Google has 100,000 Apps for their Android. Symbian, Balckberry OS, Windows Phone 7, bada and pretty much every other mobile OS has an App store. Intel now is opening an App Store for netbooks.
Downloading software online is nothing new. But the new mobile devices really seem to be fueling a resurgence in the software business. Back in 1998, an old friend told me that we spend our time online to downloading software to improve our personal computers so that we can improve our browsing experience, so that we can more efficiently download software to improve our personal computers.
Looking at the Apple iPhone App Store, if I spend 30 second reading about each App to decide whether I wanted it or not, it would take me 150,000 minutes, or 2,500 hours or 104.17 days to go through them all. OMG! Never mind how long it would take to actually try them.
I really doubt whether anyone really uses all those Apps that they download. Collecting Apps is really what it is all about. Download Apps to create the Swiss Army Knife of phones and when new Apps become available continuously improve your phone.
Did I get it right or Am I just an old fogy (i.e. A dull old fellow; a person behind the times, over-conservative). Would love to hear from you.