The Appstorization of Everyday Things

I got my iPhone finally upgraded to 3.x.x and went on a buying spree, filling an entire screen with all sorts of photo apps that range from nifty (QuadCam) to awesome (DSLR Remote). And then I'm sitting there, thinking:  if printers can have app stores and so can digital pens, why not digital cameras? All these apps that turn the iPhone into a usable camera -- what if they all lived inside a device that was actually designed to take pictures?

Camera manufacturers keep competing on megapixel counts,  but that's largely a dead end. I'd take an ability to customize the device with a custom interface and features to suit my needs over a meaningless handful of extra megapixels every day.

AdAge ran a great piece the other day about the coming Internet of things.  The appstorization is another part of the same trend; it's about enhancing every day consumer devices with third-party software purchased through the devices themselves that turn these devices into something slightly new.

That's the real magic of the iPhone -- its endless pliability. It doesn't really look like a phone, it doesn't have any of the traditional phone's affordances.  It's a screen and a button, and every new app you download from the store turns the device into a completely new thing: a Scrabble board, an air hockey table, a TV remote, an ocarina.

I don't know if I want my camera double as a Scrabble board, but I'd try this app.

Update (May 3, 2010): "Wireless Industry Partnership lists 68 known application stores (up from 34 only a few months ago)." - GetElastic

1 comment:

  1. Andrew Allsop3/4/10 11:42 PM

    It would be brilliant if you could connect your iPhone to your dslr and use it as the nerve centre, viewfinder, menu controller, storage and app erm, thing. Sort of like a dslr attachment for iPhone. You could even use it to upload your pictures straight to the web. Would keep costs down for producing the product as all they'd have to do was make it compatible with iPhone.


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