If that is your motivation, then I suggest you don't bother learning how to develop them. Both the Android Market and iPhone Appstore are full of apps with few, if any downloads. Many of these are good apps, but the developers have failed to implement a viable pricing or other revenue model and, most commonly, don't know how to market the app. As a result, all but about 2% of apps make little or no money; certainly very few, if any, are making 'squillions'.
If you want to learn something, I suggest you learn the dark arts of app marketing. There are far fewer out there with knowledge in that than the techie side of things, so if you can come to the table with that skill, you should be able to partner up with a developer without too much difficulty.
Sure they can. Microsoft will take a huge share of the market.
What do you think?
I think it is still too early to say. It comes down to the next year and if their gambit with Nokia pays off. MS is not as powerful as it once was and in the mobile sphere, they've not done well in the past.
OK. I can see why their current mobile position doesn't make sense of them being successful but they are the masters of leverage. They own the desktop, they own the servers to a large extent. And Enterprise is the next battlefield. RIM have messed up. Apple are not to be trusted in that space and Android is too fragmented. Of these RIM are the only one with any enterprise cred and that has been eroded with their outages and delays in product release cycles. I read recently that the vast majority of mobile developers are happy with winphone 7.5 and are focussing on it for the next wave of revenue.
I'm not suggesting they'll not pull it off, only that it's probably too early to say. Nice analysis, nonetheless.
they are powerful enough to pull it off
Been looking at WP lately myself and playing with a Lumnia and while the device and OS are better than expected it still feels somewhat off the pace when compared to iOS or Android.
Sure there's a bit of a void in the enterprise area when it comes to smart phones but MS's history in the mobile sector is poor, I can see them carving out a small percentage of the smart phone market anyway and depending on Nokia's device's maybe a bit more.
I can see MS with a reasonable % of the consumer phone market from an OS perspective. 20% + is realistic. Android OS providers are having difficulty differentiating and it feels like its heading in the direction of Linux in the Redhat days. Also, Google's desire to provide a free OS that results in search is where it's focus is and that might be fine for consumers but not Enterprise. This wave of technology on mobile, if the big players do the right thing with confidence, Google could be displaced and won't enjoy the same dominance that they do currently on the web.
Apple will shrink and stabilise in the same way they did on desktop and laptops.
As of 2011 Q3, Microsoft had a 1.5% share of the smartphone market. At the same time, RIM and Symbian had 11.0% and 16.9% respectively; down from Q2 by 0.7% and 5.2% respectively. Early days for MS as it was before the launch of the Lumnia.
WM7 will almost certainly eat up a good portion of the Symbian market, comprised of users who will stick with Nokia, regardless of OS, but RIM is another matter. Enterprise is certainly an enticing market, but the Lumnia is not an enterprise smartphone - it's a consumer phone.
Until it can crack that nut, all WM7 is offering is an alternative for consumers to iOS and Android - and there is demand for that as RIM discovered in the UK. Additionally it will naturally mop up a large part of the dwindling Symbian market and so may claw itself up to around 10% market share (as comparison iOS had 15.0% share in 2011 Q3).
If they can enter the enterprise space successfully, then 20% (which by coincidence was RIM's 2009 peak) might well be realistic.
All of which presume that neither Apple nor Google screw up along the way, as RIM has. Or that MS or Nokia do so. That could throw all of the above predictions out the window.
Their history in mobile has been a disaster. I remember two MS salespeople trying to flog me some Mobile Internet Server, or somesuch, in 2000 which after some examination turned out to be little more than IIS with the WAP MIME types pre-configured.
This experience gave me the impression that MS didn't really have a mobile strategy, which in many respects is borne out by the aimless and often contradictory directions that Windows Mobile took before finally being replaced with WM7. I remember them dropping touch screen support there around 2005 (memory is fuzzy, so I could be wrong) because they did not see a future in it.
Given this they were just as bad with the Internet, up until Windows 95. They realized this, admitted that they were behind the pack, and got their act together and within four years IE had eclipsed Netscape. Whether they can repeat this performance is another matter though.
Certainly RIM are focussing on consumer and kids for now. It is where all their effort is. But they still standalone as the one with hardware, OS and service levels and that is a tough one to maintain. As we have seen any of these can pull them down.
What do you think about the prospect of Nokia buying them? Maybe with a view to spinning out the OS to MS and keeping the hardware and services for themselves. Certainly no better time.
My guess is that someone is going to, or try to, buy RIM principally to grab their market share in enterprise with a view to migrating it to their OS and services (everyone's got their own cloud nowadays, after all).
Is Objective -C easy to learn,
I know html and CSS (don't laugh). and I can do websites, but I'd be really interested in developing some simple games for iphone apps on the side as well.
That's a very relative question.
Something that is easy to one person may be extremely hard to the next. I could tell you I found Quantum Mechanics a very easy subject to learn in school whilst you could find it extremely hard.
The best way to learn a programming language I feel is to do it by writing code which means you need a project or loads of little projects which you want to complete. As well as that you will need a good resource. One that I've seen recommended a lot is The New Boston.
Thanks again, I'll have a look at that link.