We did a quick survey of developers following today’ 3G iPhone announcement. All of them them were giddy about the phone and its possiblities. And all of them had one worry: What’s going on with the iTunes App store?
Specifically: How are we going to get our stuff in the store? And what happens then?
The way that Jobs and company run the store will have enormous impact on the developers’ odds. In the regular mobile world, there are two ways for developers to get their stuff on someone’s handset: on and off the “deck”. That is: You can buy something from the carrier’s mobile store. Or you can go through an end-run, usually via an SMS shortcode that you see on a TV or magazine add. That second option isn’t available on the iPhone. Everything goes through the store.
So the way that Apple chooses to display developers’ wares will have enormous impact. There will be premium space — the digital equivalent of a prime “end cap” near a grocery store’s register. And there will be the equivalent of a low shelf in the back of the store, back by the cat litter. It’s a good bet that the handful of developers that got on stage with Jobs today will end with pretty sweet placement. And that leaves everyone else understandably anxious about what will happen to them.
See all of our iPhone coverage here.
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