With the torrent of media hype about Apple's new iPhone, one of the things that has surprised me is the lack of discussion about one of the aspects of the device that I find truly disruptive... it will be running a full version of MacOS X. Now, granted, with 15 million blogs and countless web sites commenting on the iPhone in the past few days, I'm sure I've missed some where people have discussed this aspect, but to me it's a key element.
Consider this... if you have the full capabilities of MacOS X (which we don't yet know for certain but all of the Apple info seems to indicate it will have full MacOS X) - and you also have WiFi support and/or Cingular EDGE support - why not simply run the Mac version of Skype or Gizmo? Or Yahoo Messenger or AIM? Or anyone else's softphone that runs on MacOS X?
The phone then becomes an extension of your contact/buddy list and can provide that kind of connectivity wherever you can get a WiFi or EDGE connection. That to me is one of the fascinating aspects of the whole play. The phone as an application platform - with a "standard" commercial operating system.
I suppose I should note that first out "announcing their support" for the iPhone was the folks over at Jajah (from where I got the picture), but unless I'm missing something there's not a whole lot for them to do. You go to a web page, enter in the number you want to call and Jajah calls you! With that in mind, it could be said that any web-based "click-to-call" service will be "compatible with the iPhone". I mean... you'll be able to start using Google's click-to-call right away as well. Now, perhaps there is more to Jajah's "support" than just seizing the moment to ride the coattails of the iPhone announcement (they do, after all have a Jajah Mobile version of some type - I'd try it, but it won't work on my Blackberry from what I can see), but in any event it's a sign of the type of services that I can see being enabled as the iPhone rolls out.
Regardless, the iPhone will definitely be interesting as it allows Mac-based VoIP to be extended out to wherever the phone can have data coverage, be it WiFi or EDGE.
P.S. I'd definitely take one to try it out... oh, wait... that's right... Cingular doesn't offer service (or at least numbers) in Vermont! I'll just have to live vicariously through others (or suck it up and get a number elsewhere and constantly be explaining to people in VT why I have a phone with a NY area code).