chapter  10
18 Pages

The iPhone as Innovation Platform: Reimagining the Videogames Developer

WithJOHN BANKS

In 2007, Time Magazine celebrated the launch of the iPhone by declaring it invention of the year. Time’s Lev Grossman justifi ed the accolade by stating, “It’s not a phone, it’s a platform.”1 This was his fourth of fi ve reasons-the others were, “The iPhone is pretty”; “It’s touchy-feely”; “It will make other phones better”; and “It is but the ghost of iPhones yet to come.” In coming to this judgment, Grossman notes that Apple did not invent, or even reinvent, the touchscreen, “but Apple knew what to do with it.” He observes, “Platforms are for building on. Last month, after a lot of throat-clearing, Apple decided to open up the iPhone, so that you-meaning people other than Apple employees-will be able to develop software for it too. Ever notice all that black blank space on the iPhone’s desktop? It’s about to fi ll up with lots of tiny, pretty, useful icons.”2 And today, these icons now include lots of videogame apps.