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AJAX Remote after "Remote"

July 11, 2008 - Filed in Status updates, Shared thoughts by Felix

As you've likely read in the news, Apple® just released their own native iPhone™/iPod® Touch application called "Remote" to control iTunes® from afar, which in many ways is very similiar to the music module of Remote Buddy's AJAX Remote (which in its current form first came into existance around October 2007).

In case you're wondering, I don't feel bitter or angry nor do I feel any grief. Knowing about the popularity of Remote Buddy at Apple®, getting a hint or even an offer from Apple® would have been an appreciated move and - I'm sure - would have been to the benefit of everyone involved. But that's certainly not something Apple® can be asked or expected to do. That said, I'm fine with as it is now, too: an interesting new competitor has entered the market.

So what does this mean for the future of Remote Buddy's AJAX Remote?

I have been working on a native client for iPhone™ and iPod® Touch for several months now and I'll continue to work on it and release the client for free on the AppStore as soon as it's ready and Apple® approves it. That has always been the plan and I see no reason to not persue it further now:

  • In terms of iTunes® remote control, even the current, private beta of the native Remote Buddy client already offers a lot of advantages and features over what "Remote" is offering.

  • Just like Remote Buddy's AJAX Remote today, it'll be able to do a lot more than to "just" control iTunes®. Among many other things, it can also control mouse and keyboard of your Mac®, act as a remote for over 100 applications and "stream" your iSight®'s camera picture. The native client will build on this strong foundation, take it to the next level and also add a lot of fancy new stuff that I'm sure you'll love.

  • Last but not least, the performance of the native client application is simply amazing and not at all comparable with the current AJAX Remote web application. The AJAX Remote web application will still be around in future versions, though: I know a lot of you are using it in desktop browsers or as widget on your Dashboard.

I stay fully committed to Remote Buddy and its future development. Stay tuned.

11 comment(s):

Mark Trolley wrote on 12.07.2008 18:48:14:

I'm glad to hear it. I can't wait to get a native Remote Buddy app :)

Zach Matzkin wrote on 12.07.2008 20:43:20:

Me too. Please do keep working on it. I would love to join the test program...

nch Nigel Cheffers-Heard wrote on 18.07.2008 16:49:22:

Just tried it on my iPhone 3G with MacBook Pro Intel 10.5. Sometimes it works, sometimes it doesn't, which isn't good enough for me. Hope you manage to sort it, a when it is working, it is superb. Want to run Keynote and Fotomagico with it, they worked fine with my Sony Ericsson Bluetooth mobile. I must admit, I wonder why Apple didn't include this ability in the iPhone. Eh bien,keep up the good work, N

Erik Lembke wrote on 19.07.2008 18:32:13:

Sounds fantastic! As Zach already mentioned a test program would be great but for now I can\'t imagine how this would be possible since the App Store is the only (official and legal) way to distribute software installation packages for the iPhone... if there\'s another one and there\'ll be a beta program please let me know ;) Keep up the good work!

Felix Schwarz wrote on 20.07.2008 14:28:15:

Thanks everybody for all the encouragement! @ nch: Even if Bluetooth was available for 3rd party apps, the technology would still be too limiting (bandwidth-wise) to deliver such a rich experience as you can already see today even in the iPhone's browser. If it weren't for these two points, I'd go for Bluetooth in a minute as I consider it much more consumer-friendly setup-wise. With WiFi/WLAN, the full complexity of routing, different subnets, IP masquerading, firewalling, port forwarding, channel collissions, WLAN driver bugs, etc. needs to be figured out by the consumer, before he/she can use the network for peer-2-peer communication between his devices (as required here for communication between Mac and iPhone). I'd like to avoid that as much as everyone else, but as it is, it's the only wireless technology available on the Mac and iPhone that has sufficient data throughput for the kind of features Remote Buddy is offering. With regards to your feedback via support I'm glad, though, that you could solve the network issue you were having. @ Erik: That's indeed an unfortunate situation for users and developers alike. But if I think back when Apple declared web apps as the only possible "sweet solution" to development and where we are now, I'm positive that Apple will make adjustments to their scheme as time moves forward.

Mark Trolley wrote on 31.07.2008 05:05:02:

Any word on when the native app will be available?

Kevin M wrote on 31.07.2008 11:43:32:

Same question as Mark ^... ?

Felix Schwarz wrote on 01.08.2008 16:24:15:

The project makes good progress every day and will be available as soon as it is ready for release.

Mark Trolley wrote on 21.11.2008 20:39:02:

It\'s been a few months since an update...any word on when you\'ll have this in the App store? I can\'t wait :D

Kevin M wrote on 13.03.2009 01:16:46:

Hi Felix, Is there any chance we can get a status update on your progress? It's been a looong time since your last post regarding the native app and I'm sure I'm not the only person who's eagerly waiting for it - A status update wouldn't hurt... Many thanks, K.

Felix Schwarz wrote on 14.03.2009 10:49:13:

Thanks for your interest. I really appreciate it. My answer has to stay the same though (and will stay the same for all repetitions or variations of that question): The native client as well as Remote Buddy itself are under active development, development is progressing really well and the client will be released when it is ready to be released. Why is that all info I'll share for now? I'm not willing to compromise on quality, user experience or innovation. All of which takes its time to be done right. All of which I'm not ready to share with competitors prior to release day. All of which requires the freedom and flexibility to change anything at any time. Something that may be much harder once screenshots have been publicized and users have developed definitive expectations on how things have to work. For these reasons there will be no status updates, no preview screenshots and no public time table. Any and all news regarding the native client will be made available through the News and Blog pages and their respective RSS feeds / our newsletter respectively (find them on the right side of the blog/news pages). Thanks for your understanding. Best regards, Felix Schwarz

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