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Palm releases webOS SDK to devs, demos apps running on Palm Pre.

04-02-2009, 01:50 AM
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Palm releases webOS SDK to devs, demos apps running on Palm Pre.

Some new Palm stuff, some articles and a couple videos. Pandora's UI integration owns.

You devs might want to get in on this and do multiplatform gaming on both the iPhone and the Pre, make some money!

Palm announces webOS SDK availability, Palm OS emulation for Pre, new cloud services
by Joshua Topolsky, posted Apr 1st 2009 at 8:30PM

Well, it's not quite the release date and price you were hoping for, but it's definitely something. Today Palm -- via a short keynote at the Web 2.0 Expo -- announced that the company would begin taking names and numbers on the webOS dev site for potential developers who will receive an "early look" Mojo SDK. And that's starting right this moment... as in now. That news alone would be big, but reps we spoke with said that the SDK would be made available to developers that the company will be cherry-picking as early as tomorrow. So if you were looking to get into the Pre app game, here's your first big chance.

In addition to the SDK news, Palm is introducing a new set of "integrated cloud services" for developers (called Mojo Messaging Service) which will use a standardized publish / subscribe system to allow data to be bounced from the "cloud" to devices. Basically, it looks like this is Palm's play for some of that push buzz -- though the indication is that this service can and will be used for bigger tasks as well.

Finally, the company announced that third-party developer MotionApps will be making a Palm OS emulator available for purchase to coincide with the launch of the Pre. The application will be utilize the mass storage mode of the device to allow for drag-and-drop of PRCs, though according to the press release, the emulator "won't be able to leverage core webOS functionality," meaning that you probably can't expect pure bliss across all of your applications, particularly those with roots that go deeper into phone databases and the like. What's interesting to note about this app is that it's being built on more than just the standard webOS SDK -- an event which Palm called "unique." They went on to assure us that this was a one-off to allow for emulation, but we're thinking they might want to reconsider that policy by factoring in the clamor for serious gaming on a device like the Pre. You can check an image of the emulator:

So, no pricing, no release date, but lots of movement on the developer front -- which is big news if you're a company trying to launch a completely new operating system. Still, we're getting a bit antsy with all this waiting... it might be time to throw everyone a bigger bone than that tired "first half of 2009" line, guys.

Pandora, Amazon, other third-party apps demoed on Palm Pre


Dovetailing dreamingly with the company's SDK announcement today, Palm's chosen CTIA to show off a round of third-party apps for the Pre, and the good news is that they're definitely dispelling some doubts we had about the robustness of webOS' development platform and its ability to deliver compelling software. We were emphatically reminded that everything here is strictly for the sake of preview -- it's all beta, just like the Pre itself -- but that being said, it all looked smooth and relatively crash-free (as best as we could gather anyhow without giving it a more ruthless hands-on beating of our own).

First off, we saw a NASCAR app, perfect for die-hard fans (but really, even more perfect for Sprint's track record of sponsoring NASCAR events) that culls video highlights, driver profiles, and more. Next, we were treated to a brief look at the Pre's Google Maps implementation, Pandora, Amazon's music store, and FlightView, a trick little flight status app that every frequent traveler will likely want loaded. We also saw a Pre version of the Sprint TV player -- a staple service on most of Sprint's devices -- proving that the Pre has the stones to handle multimedia within its development framework. Video was just a little bit choppy, but they're not making any claims that this is final, optimized code at this point.

The best part of the whole demo, perhaps, is Pandora's notification implementation, which brings up a mini-player by tapping on the "P" visible at the bottom of any Pre screen; from here, you can play / pause, rank tracks up and down, and see a full track name, all without leaving the comfort of whatever app you might be in. Try that on an iPhone, eh? Follow the break for video!

Second "Meet Pre" video retains calming effects, shows off third party apps

If that first Meet Pre video wasn't soothing enough, Palm's released the second episode of its chill-inducing series, "This Weekend," showing off third party like Fandango and Pandora, as well as offering a sharper look at messaging and how SMS and internet clients like Google Talk / AIM are placed into one cohesive chat log with each contact. As with last time, integration is the key point to take from here, and of course being able to play Pandora in the background while browsing other apps has gotta be one of the most enjoyable features, especially for anyone who's been struggling with the iPhone's lack of multitasking. Sure, the video's great, but whether or not it'll function that well in practice is still up in the air. Hit up the read link to see it for yourself.

Youtube link | Pop Up

Youtube link | Pop Up

Youtube link | Pop Up

Last edited by arta; 04-02-2009 at 02:06 AM.
04-03-2009, 02:12 PM
Joined: Oct 2008
Location: Agoura Hills, CA
Posts: 251
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I have a hard time getting excited about this... I think I would jump to Android before the Pre...
Thanks for posting in detail, though.

Josh Rosen
Developed Above & Beyond Air Combat (Now Available!)
Developed: SciFly
Twitter: @jshmrsn
04-03-2009, 02:17 PM
Joined: Dec 2008
Posts: 4,176
Link for SDK please?
04-03-2009, 05:23 PM
Joined: Jan 2009
Location: Toronto, Ontario, Canada
Posts: 5,206
I must admit I really like what Palm have done to reinvent themselves in the Pre, but I remain firm in one opinion: No native development = FAIL. I know damn well there's some sort of halfway decent graphics chipset under that hood, but it won't be utilized to any great degree by WebOS-based apps.

Let's face it, games are the hottest ticket on the iPhone, and without any good games on the Pre (i.e. games that utilize the hardware to its fullest) it'll be cut off at the knees.

If Palm can cobble together a decent native SDK, then we'll talk.

[Relax with Galactic Chill] [Let me tell you a story.]
Currently working on: Music for Spirit Hunter Mineko
04-03-2009, 06:36 PM
I foresee a quick and painful death for the Pre.

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