Apple has already verified that the optimized version of the operating system Mac OS X is the one running in iPhones. The OS X version of the iPhone has the application “Core Animation” which is a software component that made the smooth animations on iPhone’s user interface. The iPhone’s operating system consumes almost half a gigabyte of its total 8-gigabyte storage. It is and will be able to support packaged and future Apple applications.
The CPU of the iPhone is an ARM-based processor and not the x86 or the PowerPC processors that are used in Apple’s computers. This would mean that applications are not copied easily from the Mac OS X. Applications need to be written and collected specially for the iPhone. Also, the Internet browser of the iPhone, which is Safari, is able to support web applications made with it.
There are a number of applications that can be seen on the “Home” screen: Text or SMS Messaging, Photos, Calendar, YouTube, Camera, Maps or Google Maps, Stocks, Clock, Weather, Notes, Calculator, Settings, Notes and iTunes. Aside from these, there are four applications that outline the main purposes of the iPhone and these are Mail, Phone, Safari and iPod.
Having the application YouTube allows video streaming through Wi-Fi or EDGE connectivity. Only the videos that have been encoded through QuickTime’s H.264 codec can be viewed using the iPhone. YouTube has already converted around 10,000 videos to this format and are in the process of converting their entire video catalog eventually. Because of this, the application YouTube can presently only view selected videos from the website. And since YouTube uses Flash for video playback, videos can only be watched using the iPhone application and not through opening the YouTube website in a Safari browser.
The iPhone has been designed to have the ability to officially install programs and applications exclusively from Apple. This is in spite of the hinting made by Steve Jobs that third-party applications are being developed.
There are a lot of applications developed by Apple are now available. However, Apple does not support these applications. They could be broken through any software update, although Apple is not going to design any software updates to purposely break native applications, other than the applications that can do SIM unlocking.
In October 2007, Steve Jobs made an announcement that a SDK or Software Development Kit would be available by February 2008 to third-party developers. Because of security concerns and Jobs’ admiration of the digital signature system of Nokia, Apple may adopt a similar structure.