When the iPhone was released, Apple provided no supported way to install third-party software. Clever programmers figured out a way around this which worked with iPhone software 1.0 through 1.0.2. Apple struck back, disabling third-party software in the 1.1.1 release, which developers again broke through, this time through a flaw in image processing. Who will reign supreme? Apple, when they release their iPhone software developers kit (SDK) in February 2008.
A Wi-Fi connection program lets you hook your iPhone into hotspots without entering a user name and password at each location. It removes the friction from connecting to public free and fee networks.
Navizon uses Wi-Fi to figure out where your iPhone is. Accuracy relies on a network of lightly rewarded volunteers, but the results give a picture of the future of location-based information on the iPhone.
A new firmware release for the iPhone fixes numerous security problems, while adding subtle features, such as the iTunes Wi-Fi Music Store, and a switch that lets you avoid expensive overseas data charges.
Apple has come under fire for "bricking" unlocked iPhones - rendering them unusable - with the latest iPhone update. Is that reasonable behavior? Our editors universally think not, and they aren't wild about the way Apple has made it difficult to develop native applications for the iPhone either.
Apple nears opening iPhone for third-party development, sources say. And although Apple has now opened a Web applications directory, that's not what the sources were talking about.
For the record, here's Steve Jobs's letter announcing the iPhone SDK.
Steve Jobs writes a short note assuring his interest in allowing third-party development of programs for the iPhone (and, by the way, iPod touch), reminding us sternly of how dangerous mobile phone viruses and malware are, and setting a date for release of the software toolkit: February 2008.
AppSnapp allows third-party software installation on an iPhone with 1.1.1 software installed. But it makes use of a software flaw that Apple will surely fix.