Advanced users of the Apple iPhone were delighted earlier this year, when a hack was released that allowed them to install native third party applications on the phone. Then, much to these users ire, Apple quickly responded with a software update, which broke any third party applications that were installed on their phone. By shutting off the iPhone to third party applications, Apple not only pissed off its most loyal users, but also created an opportunity
for its competitors that did allow third party applications. Well, that edge didn't stick around for long, since Steve Jobs has just announced that the iPhone will be open to native third party applications through an SDK starting in February
. Strangely, this is a similar path
that Danger took when they released their Hiptop back in 2003. Danger also started with a walled garden upon its initial launch, and then, six months after launch, finally released an SDK. Apple's SDK will be released seven months after its launch, so it looks like almost they're on the same exact schedule. It is thought that Danger's delay in releasing its SDK killed much of the excitement of third party developers. Hopefully for Apple, however, its cadres of fanboys should be sufficient to get the ball rolling on the development of third party applications for the iPhone.