A final post about the Steve Jobs interviews at the D conference: at D5 in 2007, Jobs not only appeared in a joint session with Bill Gates. He also had his customary interview with Walt Mossberg. And in the Q&A session after this interview, Jobs pretty much confirmed that Apple would provide a way for third-party developers to write native iPhone apps in the future.
Quoting from minute 56:48 in the video:
Audience member: Steve, all indications so far are that the iPhone is, like you say, a beautiful piece of software wrapped in a beautiful piece of hardware. And the fact that it’s running on OS X is a fantastic development. I think I would speak for many developers, perhaps thousands of independent developers, who would love to write apps for that platform because I believe it’s gonna be a tremendous platform for the future. But the indications are so far that it’s closed and I was wondering if you could comment on that and do you see it opening up for developers in the future?
Steve Jobs: Sure, it’s a good question. This is a very important trade-off between security and openness, right? And what we want is we want both. We wanna have our cake and eat it, too. And so we’re working through a way, we’ve got some pretty good ideas that we’re working through and I think some time later this year we will find a way to do that because that is our intent.
Walt Mossberg: Find a way to open it up so that third-party developers …
Jobs: Find a way to let third parties write apps and still preserve the security.
Mossberg: But at the start, until you get that in place …
Jobs: Until we find that way, we can’t compromise the security of the phone. This is something that has to work.
Mossberg: Is this a network issue? Is this an AT&T issue? I mean, what [do you mean] when you say, “the security of the phone”?
Jobs: I won’t mention names but I’ve used, you know, we’ve all used a lot of smartphones that crash more than once a day. And the more third-party apps you put on them, the more they crash. And nobody’s perfect, but we’d sure like our phone not to crash once a day or more. And so we would like to solve this problem, I think we’re going down some really good avenues to do it. If you could just be a little more patient with us, I think everybody can get what they want.