I bought the iPhone tonight.
It's beautiful. The user interface is gorgeous and the display is truly stunning.
iPhoto & iTunes integration is slick. Safari is so cool. WiFi on a phone is killer. Activation on AT&T is a breeze with iTunes. I'm sure I could gets used to the keyboard.
But it's not going to replace my Blackberry Curve. Unfortunately it doesn't work with Exchange in a seamless way like the Blackberry. I want wireless email, calender, contacts syncing with Exchange. And I want push. The iPhone doesn't do this.
I'm sure Apple will figure this out and offer some killer integration with Exchange soon. Maybe with Goodlink software, Visto or ActiveSync or something. please god something.
And when they do I'll be first in line.
Fred has an excellent post today about Facebook apps. After reading his post and looking at my Facebook mania post a few weeks back, I'm still excited about Facebook applications and what opportunities it might bring to startups.
However, I've gathered & refined my thoughts when it comes to facebook application developers:
Generally there are two types of application developers on facebook right now.
a) Those that are building apps just for facebook and don't have a service outside of facebook (and myspace). I've seen a bunch of companies in this category. They can build FB apps cheaply and quickly, get user feedback, build more apps, build value. Life is good. But I'm not sure these companies should raise venture capital. Especially if they don't plan or want to build services outside of their facebook. Angel funding might be a better approach.
b) Those that are building apps on facebook as a way to learn, get user feedback and use their facebook apps as a way to drive low cost traffic to their (current or future) services outside of Facebook. I like this model the best for vc or prospective vc backed companies or large companies even. This is the comment I wrote in response to Fred's post:
i've been encouraging our appropriate portfolio companies to develop fb apps. Veoh launched one at the platform launch and we have another one that is going to launch a fun one soon.
since it's relatively cheap to develop fb apps, the first goal for us is about learning. Learning what's possible, what isn't.
For me, the ROI isn't about incremental ad dollars on the FB "canvas" pages though. Most likely it will be to drive (low cost) traffic back to their respective websites.
That's why my favorite fb application biz models are those that have services outside of fb as well. It will be a lot trickier if the apps only live inside of fb (at least for vc backed companies)."
This is the first time I've heard this stated as a fact.
"Does the iPhone synchronize with my computer’s calendar and address book? Yes. It can sync with Address Book or MS Entourage on the Macintosh, Outlook, Outlook Express on Windows, or Yahoo’s address book on the Web. If you add appointments or phone numbers to the iPhone, they are added to your computer the next time you sync."
But these two statements make me uneasy about making the big switch
"Can you type with two thumbs? I’ve seen Apple employees flail away with two thumbs as though on a Blackberry , but it takes loads of practice. After two weeks, I’m still tapping with one index finger.
How snappy is the real iPhone, compared with Apple’s ads? It’s identical, with one exception: Apple never shows the iPhone when it’s on AT&T’s cellular network. That would just be embarrassing.
The founding team at thePlatform sent me this awesome photo last week. It made my day.
I sent it out today to have it framed for my office.
And exactly 1 year ago today, Comcast acquired thePlatform. They were our first investment at Spark and it was a fun ride.
It's wonderful to see them continue their success with cool new products. They are powering the high profile upcoming NBC/News Corp video service in addition to some other great wins.
I'm so happy for all of them. And this photo does a great job showing that they can kick butt in the marketplace and have a fun sense of humor along the way.
Happy Anniversary !