Wednesday, March 5, 2008

Apple Unveils iPhone 2.0 Software, KPCB Offer $100 million Venture Fund

Apple previewed its iPhone 2.0 software, scheduled for release this June, and announced the immediate availability of a beta release of its iPhone software development kit. Apple also announced its plans to operate an exclusive iPhone "AppStore" for third party applications for iPhone or iPod touch users. The App Store enables developers to reach every iPhone and iPod touch user. Developers set the price for their applications--including free applications. Developers will get 70 percent of all sales revenues and Apple will keep 30 percent. Third party iPhone and iPod touch applications must be approved by Apple and will be available exclusively through the App Store.

Kleiner Perkins Caufield & Byers (KPCB) announced the launch of the iFund with $100 million in venture capital to invest in companies developing applications and services for Apple's iPhone and iPod touch.

The new iPhone software will feature support for Microsoft Exchange ActiveSync to provide secure, over-the-air push email, contacts and calendars as well as remote wipe, and the addition of Cisco IPsec VPN for encrypted access to private corporate networks. Apple has licensed Exchange ActiveSync from Microsoft and is building it right into the iPhone, so that iPhone will connect out-of-the-box to Microsoft Exchange Servers 2003 and 2007. IT administrators can control many iPhones, including password policies, VPN setting, installing certificates, email server settings, etc.