ReadWriteWeb's Mobile Summit And The Long Shadow Of Apple

Amid rows of baked goods and gallons of orange juice and coffee, developers and entrepreneurs gathered today at the Computer History Museum for ReadWriteWeb’s mobile summit. The meeting, organized as an “unconference,” created an adhoc setting for a candid discussion of mobile trends, including augmented reality, mobile video, location based services, the internet of things (sensor, RFID data), and native versus browser based apps. CEO of ReadWriteWeb, Richard MacManus, believes that the number one mobile trend is the internet of things, and the growing importance of sensors and how that data can be leveraged: “It’s when real world objects get connected to the internet via sensors or RFID tags… I just think there is going to be so much data going onto the web and what people do with that data and what developers create based on that data is going to be a huge trend.”

It was a long day filled with dozens of group sessions and countless ideas, but there was a recurring theme that permeated many of my discussions: the long shadow of Apple (and often, other internet giants, like Google and Microsoft) and how it’s rivalries will impact the developer community. For example, the CEO of Skyhook Wireless, Ted Morgan told us, “What you’re seeing is an amazing platform war between Apple and Google and those two companies are fighting to carve up the Internet…those two guys are going to dominate most of what happens and then everyone else tries to figure out either how to supply them, get bought by them or be the third player.” To get a better sampling, see video above (pardon the quality, it was all shot on my flip cam).