Tuesday, May 5, 2009

It seemed like a perfect fit - how would Twitter developers react to an Apple takeover?

Look at Apple, the darling of the techies for whom an iPhone is a minimum requirement, despite the fact that the iPhone is distributed in a locked-down mode, with service usually only available from a single cellular service, and with applications only being available if they are approved by Apple. (By way of comparison, imagine the outcry if any Windows application had to be approved by, and sold by, Microsoft.)

Look a Twitter, the darling of the media for whom 140 characters says it all, despite the fact that the have a history of bad relations with applications vendors.

Perhaps they're a fit for each other. BusinessWeek:

As Valleywag tells it, Apple is in talks to acquire Twitter, talks which writer Owen Thomas describes as “serious.” Such a deal would have Apple paying $700 million in cash for the Web service.

Arik Hesseldahl continues:

I don’t know if there are any statistics to back this up, but anecdotally I’ve noticed that a lot of iPhone users tend also to be Twitter users. The Twitter client Tweetie is as of this morning ranked #32 on the top 100 paid iPhone applications....

If iPhone users love Twitter, then apps developers are building Twitter support into their applications. That gives you two arguments in support of an acquisition: Users love it, developers love it. Those are almost reason enough to bring the entire Twitter ecosystem under Apple’s control, and make it an official part of the iPhone ecosystem.

Somehow I don't think this would be good news for Jesse Stay and other developers - vague terms of service and API about-faces that could cause your applications to break or be banned at any time, PLUS any client applications can only be sold after approval.

Perhaps it's a winning combination for Apple, and it nets a few hundred million for Twitter and its investors, but I'm not sure what the upside is for...um..."the rest of us."
blog comments powered by Disqus