A Hidden Market for iPad Publications?
Apple tells us that almost 150,000 apps from the App Store will run on the iPad. Does that mean that the iPad apps that publishers are developing will run on the iPhone? If so, the audience is much broader for these publications than many are counting upon.
In all of the conversations that I’ve had with editors, strategists and developers this week, in the U.S. and Europe, nobody has touched on this possibility. Should publishers be developing apps with this dual audience in mind, or will iPad-specific apps demand functionality that is non-existing on the iPhone? Maybe it makes sense to curtail first-round development to iPhone apps that can be accessed by iPad owners as well, targeting this larger audience that already exists, until the tools become available to more easily create iPad-specific publications?
It may also be a way for publishers worldwide to start publishing today rather than waiting for iPad launches in their respective countries. It's reasonable to expect that most iPad owners will also be iPhone owners who would appreciate the flexibility to access the same content on both devices.
Another possibility, of course: Adobe Air. Once Adobe delivers its promised iPad Packager with Flash CS5 later this year, developers can create one single publication that can be read on any computer, phone or tablet, including the iPad and iPhone. Or at least that's what they are promising. And then there's the possibility that the iPad isn't the end-all solution. Gary Cosimini at Adobe sends along this video, showing HP's upcoming slate and its possibilities.
Bottom line: It's important to think big picture about tablet development before targeting any single delivery platform.
Thoughts? Please comment below or offline, and I'll post any information I can find on the subject.