Bring on the app stores!
@michael C ="What BS is this? There is no wall. US LAW prevents apple from closing the PC down, even if they wanted to, which they do not. the phone is only closed because the FCC gives carriers the right to do it, and because you do not own the phone, and because the OS is essentially inseparable from the device. PC and the OS on it ARE seperable."
Is this the same as the way that the apple lost the case against the iphone devteam? i.e. there is no obligation on Apple to open the iPhone to 3rd party app stores (or enable sideloading to use an Android term), but people are entitled to jailbreak the device IF THEY CAN? i.e. a Mac out the box would be locked to the Apple App Store, but tech savy people could jailbreak it? Because the vast majority of people are never going to jailbreak their phone/PC.
@Stephen Booth - It's not the device manufacturer that matters, it's the OS supplier. Obviously for Apple this is the same company, but not MS. Sure, you _can_ use other App stores, but how many people are going to (a) know that, (b) bother? if one comes with the OS. Look at Android, you can install alternative app stores to Googles, but how many people do?
Personally I think app stores are great, especially for small devs/apps. Before App stores, if you wrote a cool but simple app that people would pay 50p for (but no more), how were you going to sell it for 50p? No one is going to type their credit card into an unknown website for an app that costs 50p. Now you can sell it. And make a profit.
And I think the whole PC software model needs turning on it's head. WTF is with this still requiring admin rights to install software? And shared libraries? Yeah great when disk space was expensive but not now. Every app should come with everything it needs to run (that doesn't come with the OS), be installable into User space, and sit in a sandbox so it has very restricted access to the host OS, even when installing.
The current way of installing Apps hasn't changed since PCs were invented.