Immediately following Apple’s (NSDQ: AAPL) iPhone SDK event, I ran into Glu Mobile’s (NSDQ: GLUU) CEO Greg Ballard, and got his first impressions on how Apple was catering to the mobile application developer community. He said: “They are doing it 100 percent right. They are doing everything I thought of and a lot of stuff I hadn’t.”
I asked Ballard whether what some of the companies presented during the event were realistic scenarios. Apple invited a handful of companies on to stage to see what their developers could accomplish in just two weeks of using the SDK. During the Sega presentation, it chose its popular Super Monkey Ball to port over to the iPhone. They demonstrated how you could tilt the device from side-to-side and from front to back to keep the monkey from falling off the floating platforms. The Sega developers were impressed with the platform, saying: “This is not a cellphone game, it’s a full console game. If anything we underestimated it.” At the last minute, they flew in an additional artist to be able to scale up the quality of the visual.
Ballard said: “It is never as easy as it first appears. Developers will always put the extra effort into it. I’m sure they’ll will use the extra headroom to do more; not to make it faster.” Also, he said, the iPhone will be just one more platform to develop for — like N-Gage, Danger and Android. “They are all adding to the complexity.”
Still, he said he thinks it will usher in a new era of phone development, but added that Glu is still internally discussing how much resources will be devoted to it.
Ballard had an opinion about the enterprise announcements, too: “The whole enterprise play — I thought it was brilliant. I will be replacing my BlackBerry once they have Exchange up and running. I’m all over it.”