Apple previewed Tuesday its iPhone OS 3.0 software and announced the availability of a beta software release to registered developers. It provides new Software Development Kit (SDK), over 1,000 Application Programming Interfaces (APIs), and 100 new features.
The new APIs include In-App Purchases; Peer-to-Peer connections; an app interface for accessories; access to the iPod music library; a new Maps API and Push Notifications. The new features will be available to iPhone and iPod touch users this summer including cut, copy and paste; MMS; landscape view for Mail, Text and Notes; stereo Bluetooth; syncing Notes to the Mac and PC; shake to shuffle; parental controls for TV shows, movies and apps from the App Store; and automatic login at Wi-Fi hot spots.
Today, even the traditional infotech players are operating aggressively in the mobile market. Last week, Microsoft had also announced new details about how developers can build and sell applications for Windows phones through Windows Marketplace for Mobile, the recently announced application marketplace available with the Windows Mobile 6.5 operating system.
The iPhone OS 3.0 beta release will also include a new Voice Memo app and expanded search capability for all key iPhone apps, as well as Spotlight search across the iPhone or iPod touch.
A key developer feature in the beta software, says Apple, is the ability for apps to interface with hardware accessories, creating a new element of control for iPhone and iPod touch accessory developers as well as a new ecosystem of solutions for customers.
Developers will also be able to use Apple’s new Maps API to integrate Google Mobile Maps services within their apps which will offer Google Map tiles, current location, custom annotations and geocoding. The beta software includes the Apple Push Notification service which provides developers with a mechanism to alert users with sounds, text or a badge.
Apple says the updated Stock app will add the ability to display recent company news and current trading information like opening or average price, trading volume or Market Cap, and will offer a landscape view to see a full screen of any stock chart.
Users will also be able to view shared calendars on their iPhone with CalDAV support and sync their calendars with iCal, Yahoo, Google, and Oracle.
Here’s how developers can leverage this offer. Now, App Store has more than 25,000 applications available to consumers, and 15 more countries have been added so the App Store is now available in 77 countries, counts Apple.
It will allow developers to reach more than 30 million iPhone and iPod touch users around the world. Developers set the price for their applications and retain 70% of all sales revenue. Apple covers all credit card, web hosting and infrastructure costs associated with offering applications on the App Store.
Microsoft is also working on similar terms. It offers developers 70% of the sales revenue of their applications from Windows Marketplace for Mobile, transparency throughout the certification process, and guidance and support from the stage of development to the final sale to the consumer.
The iPhone OS 3.0 beta software and SDK will be available for registered developers to download from developer.apple.com. iPhone users will be able to download the new iPhone OS 3.0 software for free this summer and iPod touch users will be able to purchase a software update for $9.95.