Joe Hewitt Has Just Left the Room

Facebook

In a Tweet last week, Facebook developer Joe Hewitt,developer of the Apple Store’s most popular app, the  Facebook application for iPhone, tweeted that he is really done with the project:

My decision to stop iPhone development has had everything to do with Apple’s policies.

Hewitt joined Facebook in 2007 when it acquired Parakey, the company he co-founded with Blake Ross. Hewitt is also known for helping create the Firefox web browser as well as the popular Firebug development plugin.

Apple has been the center of controversy many times over their “tyrannical” policies in regards to app approvals. However, Apple remains the the most prolific purveyor ofapps for their iPhone and serves as a model for other platforms which plan to compete. Some, like Hewitt see this as disturbing if these platforms also adopt the same policies in regards to accepting or rejecting apps.

In an interview with  TechCrunch Hewitt expanded his reasons for abandoning the project:

My decision to stop iPhone development has had everything to do with Apple’s policies. I respect their right to manage their platform however they want, however I am philosophically opposed to the existence of their review process. I am very concerned that they are setting a horrible precedent for other software platforms, and soon gatekeepers will start infesting the lives of every software developer.

The web is still unrestricted and free, and so I am returning to my roots as a web developer. In the long term, I would like to be able to say that I helped to make the web the best mobile platform available, rather than being part of the transition to a world where every developer must go through a middleman to get their software in the hands of users.

Write in and let us know what you think about Hewitt’s exit, Apple’s policies and the future of app development.

Leave a Reply

Right Now on the Forums

Latest Tweets

Latest Videos