This was a bit depressing but the truth often hurts. I was listening to the latest MobileTech podcast, as usual very good, and they were discussing the Pre and how Kevin has almost abandoned the platform as he can’t get the apps he needs. James Kendrick then pointed out how there are no real major software developers (although SplashData now have Splash ID available so perhaps that is a good sign) who have as yet launched a Pre application. Sadly he is right.
The thing is, if the whole thing does goes belly up then Palm have only themselves to blame for not getting the SDK out into the hands of developers earlier and for blatantly failing to capitalise on the early surge of hype following the Pre “launch” at the start of this year. You just feel that the 6 month delay until launch hardly helped and you wonder if the Web OS itself was at that point a long way from being anywhere near ready otherwise the SDK should have been seeded out then to potential developers, ahead of the Android surge. Nearly 11 months later and there are less than 500 apps in the catalague, the thing is still in beta and you just get the feeling an opportunity has been wasted.
I’m not trying to be negative here as I really like the Palm. I guess I’m fortunate that I can get by on the relative scraps currently available, I have a good RSS app, Tweed is a good Twitter client, AccuWeather an excellent weather forecaster application, FliqTasks is great for todos, Music Remixed a very good mp3 player, Dr Podder is pretty decent for podcasts, CheckBook is fine for keeping track of money spent for my basic needs and there are a few others that do the job just fine. I tend to switch between the Pre and the Hero but end up favouring the Pre, I just get a bit bored with the Hero which is very effective but the whole experience is a bit nothing-ish after a bit as the apps are a bit lightweight.
I’m not so sure that software development will continue at the same pace on Android, not from the big software houses anyway who already, have not exactly flocked to Android either. I think the Android marketplace will continue to be dominated by the type of cheap and cheerful home-made like software we are currently seeing. Gaming on Android has never really taken off either and is well behind the iPhone and WM for example.