OpenAppMkt - the solution to the Apple "Walled Garden"?
Monday, 02 August 2010
OpenAppMkt provides a one stop shop for all iPhone web apps, which is good for the user and good for the developer. The only problem is that web apps can't do as much as native apps. We look at the pros and cons.
OpenAppMkt looks like the Apple iPhone App Store, but it isn't controlled by Apple and it isn't really the same at all. The OpenAppMkt is a good idea in that it allows developers to submit their iPhone apps for sales in the same way as in the App Store. Users can also download the OpenAppMkt to their phone, browse, pay (if the app isn't free), and install.
It all sounds great and many news reports are taking the attitude that it weakens Apple's iron grip on the app market - it doesn't. The point is that the OpenAppMkt only sells web applications for the iPhone and these have never been under the control of Apple. Indeed, if you take the time to find it, there is a directory of web apps, about 4500, maintained by Apple - Web Apps Directory. However, there is no avoiding the simple fact that web apps are a poor relation of native iOS 4 apps.
The new OpenAppMkt may not be a way to break Apple's control but it is still a welcome development. Currently the deal is a revenue split of 80% to the publisher and 20% to OpenAppMkt. For the cut OpenAppMkt provides a single point where users can find out, buy or download web applications and it deala with taking payment and looking after the transaction.
If you would like the arguments for web apps v native apps dished up as a rap - watch the video below, it has some nice moments.
Tim Sweeney, co-founder of Epic Games claims it is and he's not entirely wrong. Despite embracing open source and other postive moves, Microsoft is still heading in the direction of total control [ ... ]