At the Mobile World Conference held in Barcelona this week, a recurring theme mentioned when discussing the iPhone was how Apple needs to be more open, and how Apple’s vertically integrated business model is stifling innovation. AT&T Mobility chief Ralph De La Vega even went so far as to say that “The iPhone is a great success, but it would be even better if the applications were interoperable.” It’s amazing that people still look at the success of the iPhone without taking into consideration, even for a second, why it became so successful in the first place. John Gruber over at Daring Fireball hits the nail on the head when he retorts,
Sounds great, but makes zero sense at a technical level. There’s no way to get lowest common denominator interoperability without settling for a lower common denominator experience.
Gruber also takes a well-placed shot at all the Tech bigwigs who’ve recently made a habit of arguing that the iPhone’s closed system is hindering innovation.
Yes, prior to the iPhone progress was zipping along rapidly, but now it’s stuck because the iPhone is closed. The iPhone is hindering innovation because it’s innovative.
Amen brother. Again, it’s amazing how quickly people have forgotten what the cellphone and smartphone market was actually like before Apple decided to enter the market. In actuality, the reason so many other companies are still desperately scrambling to come up with an answer to the iPhone is precisely because they haven’t been innovating for the better part of the last decade.