This blog has argued that Software Fragementation is occurring with 3 added levels of complexity in client software development:
1)the complexity of as many as a dozen new client OS platforms with new APIs and coding;
2)the added UI complexity of multi-touch screen and Wii/Kinect-like sensor state tracking + control;
3)the complexity of delivering offline and/or online client operations & later reconciliation.
This make the lure of One Best Software Way, the true power behind Window’s software success, even greater. Why develop for many platforms or use a cross-platform tool when adopting one or at most two leading tools will bring in 70-90% of client revenues?
Well with the rise of smartphones, tablets, games, and other devices – Microsoft as the One Best Software Way on the client is under fierce assault. Microsoft Windows is losing market share in every category with exception of games. Google is gaining ground most notably in smartphones and tablets while Apple’s pioneering lead in smartphones, tablets and other devices has seen its revenues treble in three years.
So Adobe CEO Shantanu Narayen has got it right on – there is a War on for Developers.
There’s a war happening for developers; there’s a war to try to get the best applications for a particular platform and to keep that lead,” Narayen said. In its effort to attract those developers, Narayen defined Adobe’s fundamental difference with Apple as a matter of being open and inclusive versus closed and proprietary.
Unlike in the case of Windows versus IBM OS2 and Apple Mac, despite Apple’s large lead in tablets and media devices, Cupertino has already lost its market share lead in smartphones and faces formidable challenges in tablets and other devices. In short no obvious One Best Client Software Way will be available this time around. So indeed there will be a war for and among developers for one or two closed best ways – or open and cross platform. Given the Vista and IE lessons learned , ye Keep an Open Eye editor is slogging for open and cross-platform.