While everyone is excited about the new iPhone 3G, or depressed because of the fact that it won’t be available in Taiwan for a year or so, what WWDC keynote really caught my attention was, instead, the new web service that would eventually replace .Mac – Apple MobileMe platform.
It’s funny to see how the software giants response the “access my personal (mail|calendar|todo…) anywhere” question. Microsoft’s answer to that is an Exchange Server with it’s special client, i.e. Outlook, on desktops and mobiles. It’s a very classical software company approach, which evolves building everything for every purpose. Google, instead, as a company providing web service, build their services on websites – wherever there is a device, there is a browser, services on browsers are indeed, accessible anywhere.
Apple’s approach is MobileMe. MobileMe works with native applications, from Outlook to Mail.app to iPhones – so it works like an Exchange Server. What’s more, MobileMe can be access via browsers anywhere – so it also works like Google Apps. Apple is bring the two worlds together under one platform – if you are willing to pay and get vendor lock-in-ed, it would “just work”, as Jobs puts it.
Of course, the two worlds is already merging, with or without Apple. Google Android will be available later this year, and Microsoft Exchange Servers are featuring web access a long time ago (with their dumb ActiveX object though). But no one had ever get this right from the start with completed features.
MobileMe is not officially started yet; no one knows whether it will really do what it claims. I am glad that all the companies are thinking like a web right now. It’s web! It’s about clients and servers, and accessability! We are at the turning point or history – in a decade or so, when we look back, we will never recognize how we handle our information today.