User Poll: What Do You Want from the iPhone SDK?

by James R. Stoup Mar 10, 2008

Apple’s recent release of the software development kit for the iPhone has generated quite a reaction from the development community. However, today I want to ask all you readers for your thoughts on this subject. My first question goes out to all you current iPhone users while my second is aimed at those considering an iPhone purchase.

So, first off, what application are you current users most hoping to see? As for those who are undecided, what application would finally push you over the edge and convince you to buy an iPhone?

I realize that my target audience here isn’t exactly a fair representation of the average customer, but that is ok, because I think that enthusiastic Mac users are much more likely to purchase software for their iPhone than your average disaffected Sprint switcher. I could be wrong, and maybe in the long term casual users will supplant the more hardcore users. But for the moment I expect the initial sales of 3rd party iPhone apps to go to the more dedicated members of Apple’s fan base.

But getting back to the point if we can, what applications are you looking for? Is it more games? That would be my wish. But not only more games, more complex games. I don’t need another version of Tetris if you please. Likewise, I’ve played all the games of Solitaire that I think I will ever want to. Please, somebody, come up with a unique game that isn’t a horrible knockoff of Marble Madness.

And while I realize that something like Final Fantasy or Civilization might be a bit too much for the iPhone, I hope that someone can find a middle ground between that and Brickout. But like I said before, that is just my own personal dream. Today I’m interested in what you want. And it doesn’t even have to be a sexy application. All you out there who are begging to run PowerPoint presentations off your iPhone, please stand up and be proud of your desire to put such a beautiful piece of hardware to such base uses. I won’t judge, I promise.

So let me hear it. Give it to me straight. What do you want? You can either email me your choice or leave it in the comments. Next week I will total everything up and post the results.


  • As a med student (and soon to be physician) that owns an iPhone, the only reason I still carry my Palm T3 around is for medical applications. That being said, here’s my list of most wanted applications for the iPhone:

    -Pocket Wikipedia or other Encyclopedia
    -Full featured alarm clock
    -Google chat
    -Medical calculator
    -Netter’s anatomy atlas (full resolution)
    -Tarascon pharmacopia
    -PDF/image viewer such as Preview
    -Ebook reader
    -Word/Excel document reader
    -Keynote document viewer (also Powerpoint)
    -Full bluetooth functionality (sync, beam contacts, caller id displayed on my Mac)
    -Islamic prayer time calculator with calendar
    -Restaurant guides
    -World Atlas (political/geographic maps)
    -Copy/Paste functionality throughout the iPhone
    -Advanced notebook/scrapbook
    -Astronomy planetarium/atlas
    -Voice recorder
    -Ability to save/archive voicemails as mp3 files
    -Lunatic Fringe (I can dream can’t I?)
    -Unit Converter
    -Scientific Graphing Calculator

    I’ll add more as they come to me…

    area51 had this to say on Mar 10, 2008 Posts: 1
  • Okay I really want everything that i have now for my jailbroken iphone 1.1.3 “INSTALLER” APP i really want:

    -a better chatting app (aim, msn , google talk)
    -MORE GAMES!!!!!!!!!!!
    -push mail
    can’t apple just be open to everything because really what’s next they say we can have any 3rd party apps on our computers because it might crash it but we all know it might but come take the risk apple

    Garrett Williams had this to say on Mar 10, 2008 Posts: 1
  • I don’t use games on my iPod except when my grandkids borrow it.

    What I want from an iPod are two things:
    1.  Let me use it as a phone.  I do not foresee switching to AT&T;, so I can’t do this.
    2.  Let it replace my iPod - holding all of the media I have on my iPod.

    That said, my current phone keeps taking pictures of the inside of my pocket.  Its camera is useless, as I am too cheap to send low-quality photos, and the external shutter can’t be turned off.

    So I’d like to integrate an iPod with iPhoto, with the ability to download events from my iPhoto similarly to the way I do now with iTunes.

    Of course, that may mean creating an iPhoto for Windows as well.

    Howard Brazee had this to say on Mar 10, 2008 Posts: 54
  • What I want most is a good chat and voip client, for the iPod Touch. Either Skype or a SIP client.  If that happened, I think I’d buy one.

    I have a good, basic cell phone, with very basic service. I spend a *lot* of time travelling and working abroad, and until the pricing changes, I just can’t justify using mobile data services. But I usually have wifi available at client premises and in hotels.

    I understand this isn’t happening. The iTouch has no microphone, and while one could add a microphone through the dock connector, the SDK can’t access anything connected that way. But I’m disappointed that Apple is being so controlling as to shut me out of the market.

    alpinegizmo had this to say on Mar 10, 2008 Posts: 1
  • I am ready to dump my Treo.  I need these applications to pull it off.

    Expense Tracker - An expense tracking program that makes expenses easy to enter and transfers them to pre-formatted spreadsheets.  Absolutely necessary.  I spend very little time doing my expenses with the program I have and do not want to go back.

    Password Tracker - A program to keep track of passwords and other access information for all the web sites and other venues that I access.  I have over a hundred entries on my Treo.

    A voice recorder that is really easy to access.

    Bill Tracker - A program to track a list of recurring bills to pay. 

    Quick Note Pad - Maybe even let me draw something with my finger tip.  Could be combined with the voice recorder.

    A stepped up Clairvoyance that generates a list of possible words instead of just one alternative. 

    Voice Dialer

    June can not get here soon enough.

    rayjay8492 had this to say on Mar 11, 2008 Posts: 2
  • Being able to read and write documents documents would make me buy one (including, freeing up the Bluetooth to accept a portable keyboard). University notes on my phone would be great.

    Ability to use as a file storage unit (I don’t think this can be done yet), sync the most important documents on my laptop onto my iphone (just in case). Again mostly a bluetooth firmware upgrade.

    Language translation tools, in particular Russian-English English-Russian.

    Voice recorder and minimal editing tools.

    Graham had this to say on Mar 11, 2008 Posts: 24
  • I’m pretty exited by the prospects of what will be released in June. Here are some of the things I’m wishing for.

    OmniFocus - good to hear this is Omni Groups top priority
    Omni Outliner - shouldn’t be to much of a stretch from OF
    A native version of 1 Password
    PDF reader
    Word / Excel viewer (editable would be sweet, but maybe to much to hope for)
    Ability to do a spot light type search on my home network
    Syncable Notes
    A syncable interface to MacJournal
    Mass delete on e-mails
    E-book reader
    Copy and paste
    Full Bluetooth conectivity

    hiroProtagonist had this to say on Mar 11, 2008 Posts: 2
  • The iPhone would need to run Palm applications, specifically
    HanDBase, Datebook (I’m used to it and don’t want to change) Epocrates, and maybe a few others. It would also have to cost a LOT less for the phone subscription Current ATT rates are way beyond acceptable. I’ll probably never get one.

    Twenex had this to say on Mar 11, 2008 Posts: 1
  • There is a lot of online video content that the iphone cannot view or stream. A similar application to the youtube one to view other online videos would be great.

    Graham had this to say on Mar 12, 2008 Posts: 24
  • area51, you’d be pretty happy now with the preview of Epocrates and Spore. smile I Reckon the rest will follow pretty soon.

    Chris Howard had this to say on Mar 12, 2008 Posts: 1209
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