Steve Jobs alert: Killer Java app for iPhone

Steve Jobs doesn’t think there’s anything cool being done in Java. At least that’s what he told Sun Microsystems’ CEO Jonathan Schwartz.

If I were Jonathan I’d pay John Poisson, CEO of Tiny Pictures to head over to Steve Jobs’ office and show him Radar.

This turns your camera phone into a social tool for sending fun stuff to your family. I got a demo a little while ago and it rocks.

Radar is sort of like Twitter (and we saw how popular that got in the past few weeks) but even better: it’s small photos for your friends. It’s getting very popular and I want it. But, the problem is I’m getting an iPhone and the iPhone doesn’t yet have a Java runtime (which Radar needs for its full-featured client — a lower quality WAP client is available, but it isn’t nearly as cool or useful).

Anyway, I’m noticing a trend here. The coolest stuff to come before my camera lately has been for mobile phones.

Maybe instead of Web 2.0 we should be talking about Mobile 2.0.

83 thoughts on “Steve Jobs alert: Killer Java app for iPhone

  1. Excuse me, but there are NO OPEN CELL PHONES on the market today.. so why should the iPhone be? Don’t tell me there are! There aren’t. Every one of them requires you to download and pay for apps through their exclusive service.. You can’t just download them over a USB cable.. and you can’t save them or retransmit them to a new phone when you upgrade. They force you to pay for them again. How is that open? Why should iPhone work any differently from the competitors? As usual, people have unusually high expectations of Apple.. so much so that they don’t even reality check what exists today when they debate about how what Apple makes should be working tomorrow morning.. !

  2. First off, “mobile 2.0″ is long past us. Please visit Asia at your earliest convenience and have a local show you what they can do with their devices. (Japan, Korea especially)

    Second, the “next web” is not about the device or the platform or the browser, it is about finally making all three able to – connect to the network as easily as possible, – connect as ubiquitously as possible and – access the same data/services regardless.

    Yes making the mobile platform as open as possible is key. That tranlsates to having at least one platform available on-device that makes afordances for hackes and open-source weenies to play and make stuff. Nokia did this with Python on the N-series (and then promptly messed that up).

    The only problem with Java is it never got picked up really by anyone but the corporate programmer crowd. DIY hackers prefer other environments/cultures.

    It is very clear the iPhone is not in any way positioned for the tinkerers, but for the mass market who just wants something “polished and perfect”, regardless if that means “closed, proprietary, controled” (and I make no moral judgement on that. there are benefits to being so.) And it is further clear that Apple is not interested in, or simply does not see, in allowing their market base to invest some of it’s time to make their product really shine. Maybe tat will come later. “Get as many out in a first run, then open it up a bit once we’ve recouped development costs and not incurred too much support pain (which would happen if they ship something with little open doors that unwitting users could get snagged on).”

    That said, the iPhone runs Mac OS X, which is BSD Unix, and it has a USB port. Someone will “get in”, and quick too.

    Anyways. I don’t know how John feels about us saying so but yes, Radar is like Twitter for cameraphone pictures, and it is hugely powerful. Way more so than Twitter. (The only reason the technerds didn’t pick up on Radar earlier is cause it has no API or feeds or other such stuff: it too is meant for a different market…)

  3. First off, “mobile 2.0″ is long past us. Please visit Asia at your earliest convenience and have a local show you what they can do with their devices. (Japan, Korea especially)

    Second, the “next web” is not about the device or the platform or the browser, it is about finally making all three able to – connect to the network as easily as possible, – connect as ubiquitously as possible and – access the same data/services regardless.

    Yes making the mobile platform as open as possible is key. That tranlsates to having at least one platform available on-device that makes afordances for hackes and open-source weenies to play and make stuff. Nokia did this with Python on the N-series (and then promptly messed that up).

    The only problem with Java is it never got picked up really by anyone but the corporate programmer crowd. DIY hackers prefer other environments/cultures.

    It is very clear the iPhone is not in any way positioned for the tinkerers, but for the mass market who just wants something “polished and perfect”, regardless if that means “closed, proprietary, controled” (and I make no moral judgement on that. there are benefits to being so.) And it is further clear that Apple is not interested in, or simply does not see, in allowing their market base to invest some of it’s time to make their product really shine. Maybe tat will come later. “Get as many out in a first run, then open it up a bit once we’ve recouped development costs and not incurred too much support pain (which would happen if they ship something with little open doors that unwitting users could get snagged on).”

    That said, the iPhone runs Mac OS X, which is BSD Unix, and it has a USB port. Someone will “get in”, and quick too.

    Anyways. I don’t know how John feels about us saying so but yes, Radar is like Twitter for cameraphone pictures, and it is hugely powerful. Way more so than Twitter. (The only reason the technerds didn’t pick up on Radar earlier is cause it has no API or feeds or other such stuff: it too is meant for a different market…)

  4. Radar’s cool. Even I would give a piece of my brain to Steve Jobs to feast upon, and I’m sure he would have a good apetite for it. Though I worship him :)

  5. Radar’s cool. Even I would give a piece of my brain to Steve Jobs to feast upon, and I’m sure he would have a good apetite for it. Though I worship him :)

  6. I saw a demo of radar last year and signed up, but haven’t used it beyond posting a few test photos.

    It seems a step back to a time when people thought you were only supposed to share photos with your friends and family.

    But people want to be able to publish their photos for anyone to see.

    And if there are photos you don’t want everyone to see, there are privacy controls on flickr (and other sites).

    It seems like radar should at least give people the option of making some or all of their photos public.

  7. I saw a demo of radar last year and signed up, but haven’t used it beyond posting a few test photos.

    It seems a step back to a time when people thought you were only supposed to share photos with your friends and family.

    But people want to be able to publish their photos for anyone to see.

    And if there are photos you don’t want everyone to see, there are privacy controls on flickr (and other sites).

    It seems like radar should at least give people the option of making some or all of their photos public.

  8. @12. No. Actually Steve Jobs is dead wrong. He appears to believe that mobile phones are more like iPods than they are like personal computers; so it’s OK for them to be *effectively* closed devices.

    Now, imagine if Apple made it so that Macs were closed devices, such that “anyone” couldn’t develop for them. They wouldn’t sell as many as they do. And the truth is, mobile phones are rapidly becoming small personal computers. And that means, people will want to be free to install (and develop) apps on them, in the way they want. It’s been pretty obvious this would happen for years; but they’re really coming into their own now as the “computer power” of phones reaches the point where it’s possible to develop really cool apps. And almost always, these apps are developed by using Java, because Java ships on 80% of cell phones.

    Don’t bet against Apple including Java with iPhones at some point. Steve Jobs happens to be wrong on this; but he’s hardly an idiot. If enough Apple customers tell Apple they want Java on iPhone, that’s what they’ll get. And that might be sooner than many people think… The day of the iPhone announcement, Apple developer boards were swamped with Apple developers asking for Java on the iPhone. So much so that Apple had to ask people to stop posting on that topic because it was swamping the boards.

  9. @12. No. Actually Steve Jobs is dead wrong. He appears to believe that mobile phones are more like iPods than they are like personal computers; so it’s OK for them to be *effectively* closed devices.

    Now, imagine if Apple made it so that Macs were closed devices, such that “anyone” couldn’t develop for them. They wouldn’t sell as many as they do. And the truth is, mobile phones are rapidly becoming small personal computers. And that means, people will want to be free to install (and develop) apps on them, in the way they want. It’s been pretty obvious this would happen for years; but they’re really coming into their own now as the “computer power” of phones reaches the point where it’s possible to develop really cool apps. And almost always, these apps are developed by using Java, because Java ships on 80% of cell phones.

    Don’t bet against Apple including Java with iPhones at some point. Steve Jobs happens to be wrong on this; but he’s hardly an idiot. If enough Apple customers tell Apple they want Java on iPhone, that’s what they’ll get. And that might be sooner than many people think… The day of the iPhone announcement, Apple developer boards were swamped with Apple developers asking for Java on the iPhone. So much so that Apple had to ask people to stop posting on that topic because it was swamping the boards.

  10. Greg: the Radar mobile app will be available through various distribution partners, and is now downloadable for a limited time through the Radar WAP site.

    Once you’ve created your account on the web, log into Radar (http://radar.net) from your phone’s mobile browser. If your phone and carrier are supported, you’ll see a “Download Software” link that will install the app over the air.

    If you don’t see a link, stay tuned. We’re adding more devices all the time.

    Enjoy.

  11. Greg: the Radar mobile app will be available through various distribution partners, and is now downloadable for a limited time through the Radar WAP site.

    Once you’ve created your account on the web, log into Radar (http://radar.net) from your phone’s mobile browser. If your phone and carrier are supported, you’ll see a “Download Software” link that will install the app over the air.

    If you don’t see a link, stay tuned. We’re adding more devices all the time.

    Enjoy.

  12. What do you mean it doesn’t support Google Maps? and Yahoo? One of the main buttons is Maps and it’s Google Maps, the email is Push Tech and it’s Yahoo. I’m I missing something?

  13. What do you mean it doesn’t support Google Maps? and Yahoo? One of the main buttons is Maps and it’s Google Maps, the email is Push Tech and it’s Yahoo. I’m I missing something?

  14. Also, Robert,

    As we’re talking (discussing) about Java, and how cool you can get with it, may I suggest you go visit: http://www.forbidden.co.uk , for Forbidden Technologies
    and their products Clesh and Forscene (-I don’t work for them).

    They’re also at Von07.

    Their products have been available in beta and basic form for years+, and the full-bloodied stuff for a couple of years+ (-well before youtube, etc. developed).

    Yours kindly,

    Shakir Razak

  15. Also, Robert,

    As we’re talking (discussing) about Java, and how cool you can get with it, may I suggest you go visit: http://www.forbidden.co.uk , for Forbidden Technologies
    and their products Clesh and Forscene (-I don’t work for them).

    They’re also at Von07.

    Their products have been available in beta and basic form for years+, and the full-bloodied stuff for a couple of years+ (-well before youtube, etc. developed).

    Yours kindly,

    Shakir Razak

  16. Hi Robert,

    You need to track what’s happening in northern europe and Japan a Lot more; I keep hearing about what are meant to be realy cool leap-ahead mobile apps/services on american blogs, but to me in the UK they don’t seem that especially special!

    Great Blog Obviously. :)
    (1st comment here!)

    Kind regards,

    Shakir Razak

  17. Hi Robert,

    You need to track what’s happening in northern europe and Japan a Lot more; I keep hearing about what are meant to be realy cool leap-ahead mobile apps/services on american blogs, but to me in the UK they don’t seem that especially special!

    Great Blog Obviously. :)
    (1st comment here!)

    Kind regards,

    Shakir Razak

  18. Hey, Paul – you live on the PC. In the mobile world, Java’s da bomb, and has been for years. None of that desktop hangup/headache, great performance and tools, and a huge ecosystem to play with. So stop hanging out with the wrong age bracket, dude…

  19. Hey, Paul – you live on the PC. In the mobile world, Java’s da bomb, and has been for years. None of that desktop hangup/headache, great performance and tools, and a huge ecosystem to play with. So stop hanging out with the wrong age bracket, dude…

  20. Steve jobs is dead right, and I’m glad somebody is finally speaking the truth about Java. For years I have been listening to technocrats praise while everyone I know who actually uses a computer steers clear of Java apps like the plague and doesn’t use them unless there is absolutely no other tool that can do the job.

    Bottom line: compared to the performance expectations developed by the users of any given platform, the Java version of any function is dog slow, and I often find myself wishing it had never existed so somebody would have an incentive to code it the *right* way.

    Make no mistake: Java gets you easier cross-platform and return it sacrifices everything else.

    The idea of transplanting this always-several-notches-down user experience to something like a mobile phone makes me shudder.

    No java support is a feature. Glad somebody finally has balls to implement it.

  21. Steve jobs is dead right, and I’m glad somebody is finally speaking the truth about Java. For years I have been listening to technocrats praise while everyone I know who actually uses a computer steers clear of Java apps like the plague and doesn’t use them unless there is absolutely no other tool that can do the job.

    Bottom line: compared to the performance expectations developed by the users of any given platform, the Java version of any function is dog slow, and I often find myself wishing it had never existed so somebody would have an incentive to code it the *right* way.

    Make no mistake: Java gets you easier cross-platform and return it sacrifices everything else.

    The idea of transplanting this always-several-notches-down user experience to something like a mobile phone makes me shudder.

    No java support is a feature. Glad somebody finally has balls to implement it.

  22. James: I’ll get the video up in a couple of weeks. But, it does a lot more than that and displays it in a much cooler way than a Web site or email would display pictures. It also is a social network, not just a picture sharing site.

  23. James: I’ll get the video up in a couple of weeks. But, it does a lot more than that and displays it in a much cooler way than a Web site or email would display pictures. It also is a social network, not just a picture sharing site.

  24. Ok… so I can’t run GMail. I can’t run Yahoo! Go. I can’t run Radar. I can’t run Google Maps. So tell me again, other than feeling swanky and groovy, why I’d want to part with $500 for an iPhone? Rumor has it Google’s working on a phone, I wonder what platform they’re going to support… am I missing something?

  25. Ok… so I can’t run GMail. I can’t run Yahoo! Go. I can’t run Radar. I can’t run Google Maps. So tell me again, other than feeling swanky and groovy, why I’d want to part with $500 for an iPhone? Rumor has it Google’s working on a phone, I wonder what platform they’re going to support… am I missing something?

  26. Robert, can you explain why Radar needs Java? I don’t get it. It looks like it is email/sms of a picture to the Radar site where it can be shared. Nothing of that needs Java. I haven’t really looked at the Radar site so please enlighten me.

  27. Robert, can you explain why Radar needs Java? I don’t get it. It looks like it is email/sms of a picture to the Radar site where it can be shared. Nothing of that needs Java. I haven’t really looked at the Radar site so please enlighten me.

  28. Who wants stupid shit like this other than fat 40 year old dudes who think that they’re miraculously in touch with what kids want these days.

  29. Who wants stupid shit like this other than fat 40 year old dudes who think that they’re miraculously in touch with what kids want these days.

  30. How sure are you it doesn’t have a Java Runtime? (granted… you DO talk with the one guy who would know if anyone outside Infinite Loop does…) :)

  31. How sure are you it doesn’t have a Java Runtime? (granted… you DO talk with the one guy who would know if anyone outside Infinite Loop does…) :)

  32. The Apple iphone will be a disappointment inasmuch as it’ll be locked down so tightly that revolutionary apps like radar will not work.

  33. The Apple iphone will be a disappointment inasmuch as it’ll be locked down so tightly that revolutionary apps like radar will not work.

  34. Well, i have already touched one of the Iphones, and what i saw was amazing. The graphics are very original. The iphone will include one or two games when shipped out. More will be released for download but you have to buy them. There is a racing game which is amazing. I was so impressed with this phone. And also there are somethings that they never mentioned that will amaze people alot. There are no words to explain how this phone works. And by the way, apple has made it so that this would be the first phone without any glitches… This is so people wont complain of it reseting or turning off. They made sue it was perfect.

  35. Well, i have already touched one of the Iphones, and what i saw was amazing. The graphics are very original. The iphone will include one or two games when shipped out. More will be released for download but you have to buy them. There is a racing game which is amazing. I was so impressed with this phone. And also there are somethings that they never mentioned that will amaze people alot. There are no words to explain how this phone works. And by the way, apple has made it so that this would be the first phone without any glitches… This is so people wont complain of it reseting or turning off. They made sue it was perfect.

  36. I agree. I haven’t seen a web 2.0 site that’s stood out and made me want to cry it was so beautiful in a while. I think we’re transitioning into a sort of technology 2.0. Everything seems to be innovating and expanding into new markets and new technologies, it’s really exciting. I can’t wait for my iPhone. I will put Java on that device if it’s the last thing I do =D

  37. I agree. I haven’t seen a web 2.0 site that’s stood out and made me want to cry it was so beautiful in a while. I think we’re transitioning into a sort of technology 2.0. Everything seems to be innovating and expanding into new markets and new technologies, it’s really exciting. I can’t wait for my iPhone. I will put Java on that device if it’s the last thing I do =D

  38. Yes, Mobile 2.0! Eric Schmidt hits it — “Mobile phones are cheaper than PCs, there are three times more of them, growing at twice the speed, and they increasingly have Internet access.”

  39. Yes, Mobile 2.0! Eric Schmidt hits it — “Mobile phones are cheaper than PCs, there are three times more of them, growing at twice the speed, and they increasingly have Internet access.”

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