At the Web 2.0 Expo in San Francisco this week, Palm announced that third-party developers can now apply for access to the company’s “Mojo” Software Development Kit (SDK) for the upcoming Palm Pre and webOS. Not all developers will be let in at first however – word on the street is that priority will be given to apps that take advantage of the hooks provided by webOS into the Pre’s address book, GPS and calendar – but as the SDK becomes more robust and Palm is able to scale support, access will be made more widely available.
Meanwhile, five hundred odd miles away in Las Vegas at CTIA 2009, Palm was busy demoing a number of third-party apps from developers who’ve been given extra early access, including Fandango, Pandora, Nascar and Sprint. The Fandango and Pandora apps are particularly impressive (see video below courtesy of CrunchGear), and are a good example of how Palm hopes to compete with the likes of iPhone, BlackBerry, Nokia and Android.
Fandango is exactly the kind of thing that Palm is hoping third-party developers will deliver. The movie booking app takes advantage of GPS to narrow down search results to movie theaters and times that are relevant, and then after booking a ticket, ‘pre’-empts the user by adding an entry to the phone’s calendar and offering to invite friends.
Multi-tasking is one of the key selling points of webOS, particularly when compared to the iPhone, and the app for Internet radio service Pandora is a great example of how it works in practice. Not only does Pandora continue to stream audio when in the background but it also utilizes the webOSes non-intrusive notification bar to deliver one-click access to Pandora’s media controls (play, pause, skip etc.) when outside of the app.