Maria jumped onto the early-adopter bandwagon for the first time recently and I had a chance to play with the Palm Pre smartphone. It’s a nifty little device. Not so nifty that I’m shelling out cash for one- yet. I carry a blackberry for work and still have hard feelings (and a pile of broken Pilots and old Visors in a box somewhere) on Palm’s failure to hold onto and grow out of the PDA market that it defined- but interesting enough that when she described what the built in apps can do I had some ideas and went looking for the SDK.
Surprise. It’s still in “early adopter” mode and you have to register and wait until your name comes up in whatever scheme they’re using to choose developers. That’s the sort of thing you do when the device is not yet widely available and the tools and documentation are raw. Except “early adopters” for SDK’s expect it to be raw. They’re developers, remember, used to incremental releases and half done documentation. It’s the sort of thing that happens when marketing is afraid that you’ll get one, and only one, try at launching before the bad reviews sink it. I looked, there’s next to nothing in the Palm application store and it’s going to stay that way until Palm gets the SDK out into people’s hands and I don’t mean by someone leaking it (heh, read last night that it was leaked) so it finds its way into torrents.