Yesterday, Apple announced the new iPhone OS 3.0. This is a major upgrade to the software where we have many enhancements and new features.
This OS also comes with a new software developer kit [SDK] with more than a thousand new APIs available for the developers which can really transform and upscale the range of medical apps that we see now on the iPhone and iPod Touch. Examples include the new push notifications and the bluetooth pairing which previously hampered developers from developing real time billing and coding apps for example.
They also gave all what the customers have asked for such as copy and paste, MMS, global search, landscape keyboard other than Safari and several other great improvements.
But what attracted my attention in the new OS, is the new subscription enabled app store, a new feature that Scot Forstall [SVP of iPhone software] has clearly and loudly announced about the new SDK. The new In App Purchase is where developers can ask for payment for subscription based content from within the app and via iTunes store directly. Not only that, but also he stated specifically that a free app should stay a free app.
Here’s a quote from his talk: “...Free apps remain free. You won’t be asked ever to buy something that is inside that free application…”
This is of course going to force Apple’s 30% share into the revenue and they will no longer sit back and watch these developers making money from their iPhone customers without sharing.
This is a big change in the game. Epocrates, PEPID, Skyscape, and Unbound Medicine and others should no longer be able to sell us free apps and then ask us to fill it with purchased content from their websites.
We eluted to this in a previous post and many users have written complaints on iTunes reviews as they feel fooled by getting a free template which has to be stuffed for money.
This is a new SDK and a new feature and it might take sometime [the update will be available to consumers next summer] before we actually going to see changes into the business models of our beloved medical developers.
Ultimately, this is going to be rather good for us because by then we know exactly how much the app is going to cost before we download it. Also, the top free and paid lists will then truly reflect the trends and no longer be redundant and so we’ll know which is the best app to buy.
So let’s wait and see, there’s going to be a lot of action before the end of 2009..
Tags: iPhone 3.0 OS