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  1. Posts
    38
    Apologies - and please skip to the next post if this is inappropriate in length!

    Just some thoughts on Apple, UT and development:

    Apple offers a publishing service - when you sign up, you sign up for the current terms - when they give notice of a change of terms, you have to determine whether the service still makes sense for you, and then whether to sign up for the new terms, or not.

    If Apple offers new service terms that are unappealing to many of their existing customers, they will damage their business. On the other hand, if they offer new terms that reflect changes in their publishing service that benefit their existing and potential customers, they may improve business for themselves and all their customers.

    In this case, very little is known for certain about the change in the publishing service that may be imminent - only speculation based on the TOS change and some historic parallels that may or may not be pertinent. Many on these forums feel squeezed by a ‘battle of the titans’ story where indie developers are suffering as collateral damage to a conflict between Apple and Adobe.

    Outside these forums, the Apple-Adobe conflict has been widely discussed, and events have shown that this may be an important aspect of the story - but even Adobe are small compared to Apple or to the growing size of the mobile computing market, and they may just be symptoms and collateral damage of a larger set of market forces, not least the rift with Google.

    Some speculations have focused on the iPad/A4 custom chip aspect of the story. The argument is that A4 may not be an ARM-based design, and that truly native applications will be required to differentiate Apple’s performance in responsiveness, and battery life, as mobile platforms go head to head in the next few months/years. If this is so, UT have to be clear whether this Apple advantage is real, and if it is good for their customers and themselves. If UT conclude that the Apple publishing model/future is a significant sector of the market, they may have to slow down the movement towards the all-in-one IDE platform with convergence between the Unity and Unity iPhone branches. This does not necessarily rule out a convergence at some point in the future. Nor does it imply a wasted investment, as staying at the forefront of this massively expanding mobile industry is going to be well-rewarded into the foreseeable future.

    Over the long term, it has to be a good thing for all of us - as customers who may be consumers of their publishing service or end-users of the published products - that multiple viable market channels emerge where there can be cost competition, quality competition and innovation competition. We have to expect that each of these channels will find their place in the overall market by balancing their commitment to each of these competition modes differently - and that, over time, some will drift from one orientation towards another, and suffer changes in their reputation.

    Indie developers will likely look for the channels that tend towards low cost access, variable pricing and good reputational exposure based on low-key marketing. Established developers - even long time indies - will likely look for exclusive access, regulated pricing and brand prominence assured by strong marketing. This means that we need Apple, Android and other channels too.

    It seems that Apple are positioning themselves to lead the market by offering quality/performance for premium prices rather than by novelty/volume as they did when they had the advantage as first movers - I imagine Apple have not forgotten the moment in their history when they gave away the high-margin end of the business to Mac clones and were left with only low-margins to support their R&D. I don’t imagine they will be wanting to repeat that race to the bottom - and, from what I hear on these forums, neither will UT or its developer customers. In the short term, this change in Apple’s posture may not be as comfortable for un-established developers as for well-established ones.

    I would guess that Apple made their pitch to UT about their ongoing publishing model and why it would be good for UT to exploit it even though it requires UT to adapt its business/engineering plans - it is very unlikely that Apple want to reduce the quality of goods in their store. (Surprisingly, I rather imagine that it was Apple pitching to UT rather than UT pleading with Apple - one day it would be nice if David H was able to fill us in on the flavor of these discussions.)

    If UT conclude Apple’s pitch is real, the question is not whether to walk away, but rather, how to manage the disruption to their own development plans, and to the development process enjoyed by their users. This is straightforward engineering thinking, and it takes time to work out the best path forward - announcing half-thought out plans will only be more de-stabilizing for UT and their users, and asking for patience is clearly the only reasonable way to proceed.

    There is a chance that the outcome of this disturbance will be a UT route into the Apple eco-system that is even more powerful and advantageous to everyone here.

    Here’s hoping!


  2. Location
    Jacksonville, AL
    Posts
    196
    Quote Originally Posted by motojt
    @Jacob, are they though? We actually don't know what UT are planning. Are they planning on building power tools into a glove so it seems like we're using our hands? Your new analogy fits perfectly, because now that we've bought our Unity power tools that we're not allowed to use, what do we do with them?
    There are other car companies to work for. Because we can't use our power tools, we can either find a new place to use them, or follow the rules and continue working for Toyota. The fact of the matter is, I believe Unity WILL find a way for us to continue to use our power tools. However, what I am saying is that the fact that they are doing ANYTHING AT ALL is much more than many software companies would do. I paid for Unity iPhone just like everyone else, but I don't feel like I am "entitled" to it forever. I purchased it because it saved me countless hours on something I was determined to do anyway. If I can no longer use it because of Apple's decision, I will not hold Unity to blame.

    What people need to realize is that Unity had no way of knowing this was going to happen. Even under the worst circumstances, I did not think Apple would ever do something like this. We can't expect Unity to know the future anymore than we do. They are human - just like us.

    Quote Originally Posted by motojt
    @Tempest, that's basically what Foxis is saying. UT are all about damage control at this point. Also, their silence could be considered lying if their current iPhone product is not compliant yet claims to be with the following quote:
    Quote Originally Posted by UT
    Whether on an iPhone, an iPod touch, or an iPad, you will be able to dazzle your audience with the finest content available in the App Store.

    Of course that can also be interpreted many ways...
    Even if Apple pulled the plug on Unity today, this would still be a true statement. You will always be able to "dazzle" your audience with Unity iPhone, regardless of the ability to actually sell you App on the App Store.


  3. Posts
    450
    Quote Originally Posted by Jacob Williams
    Because we can't use our power tools, we can either find a new place to use them...
    Actually, no we can't. Unity iPhone doesn't work on anything other than iTouch devices.

    Also, while you may not feel "entitled to it forever" that's your own personal view. If I pay for something, I expect to be able to use it for its advertised purpose for as long as I own it.


  4. Posts
    1,286
    Also, while you may not feel "entitled to it forever" that's your own personal view. If I pay for something, I expect to be able to use it for its advertised purpose for as long as I own it.
    What would you say about what happened recently (last year) when analog television was no longer supported?

    Also, Unity isn't falsely advertising the product. As far as I've seen, no one has been rejected by the new TOS clause for using Unity. When Apple starts enforcing it, then Unity's claim may change, but their current claim is valid.
    Nick Breslin, Social & Unity Developer
    Founder of Etiquette Studio


  5. Posts
    450
    Quote Originally Posted by Tempest
    What would you say about what happened recently (last year) when analog television was no longer supported?
    What, you mean how I can't use rabbit ears anymore? The TV still works fine. And the government gave out free digital tuners. Are UT going to give out Unity Android for free?

    Quote Originally Posted by Tempest
    Also, Unity isn't falsely advertising the product. As far as I've seen, no one has been rejected by the new TOS clause for using Unity.
    I never said they were, I said they COULD be. The truth is, as of today, they don't know 100% either way, or if they do they're not saying. That's the point Foxis is making about transparency.


  6. Posts
    1,286
    Quote Originally Posted by motojt
    Quote Originally Posted by Tempest
    What would you say about what happened recently (last year) when analog television was no longer supported?
    What, you mean how I can't use rabbit ears anymore? The TV still works fine. And the government gave out free digital tuners. Are UT going to give out Unity Android for free?
    Yes. What if the government hadn't? The product which you had original purchased no longer works, because of the service provider outside of the manufacturer's control? When the product isn't supported, it isn't supported. Just because someone gave you something to allow you to use a DIFFERENT service, doesn't make up for it. Building for android doesn't give you iTunes App Store access.

    Quote Originally Posted by motojt
    Quote Originally Posted by Tempest
    Also, Unity isn't falsely advertising the product. As far as I've seen, no one has been rejected by the new TOS clause for using Unity.
    I never said they were, I said they COULD be. The truth is, as of today, they don't know 100% either way, or if they do they're not saying. That's the point Foxis is making about transparency.
    Yes, I know you said 'could'. I was just trying to say that's highly unlikely. Also, if the rejections were coming, we'd know about it from developers, not from UT. Since no one has posted rejections on the forum (and we've seen a long history of developers doing such things for other issues), it supports the fact that at the moment, everything is still okay.
    Nick Breslin, Social & Unity Developer
    Founder of Etiquette Studio

  7. Lka Lka is offline

    Location
    Italy
    Posts
    297
    Quote Originally Posted by motojt
    And the government gave out free digital tuners. Are UT going to give out Unity Android for free?
    Wait, what?? Free digital tuners?? I had to buy mine.. I haven't got nothing free from my gov. Maybe this time I'll get a free Android.


  8. Location
    Columbus, OH
    Posts
    1,652
    It seems pretty clear to me that UT is having to rework Unity somehow to comply with the new terms (hence the silence). What really worries me is that the way UT might need to change it would be to do away with Mono (and C# and JS) and all the scripts I've been writing will have to be rewritten.

    ....which makes me reluctant to continue using Unity at all until this is cleared up. In other words, eroding my confidence in Unity until then.


  9. Posts
    450
    @Tempest, while it's nice that apps are still going through, Apple can still pull them later when they decide to fully enforce the rule. I'm sure we'd all like a definitive Yes or No as to whether or not Unity iPhone will currently meet the license agreement. I think, going forward UT and other middleware providers should look into getting some sort of official nod from Apple that can be displayed much like Nintendo's Official Seal of Approval. Nokia has it, Microsoft has it, if Apple doesn't have it, people should start demanding it.


  10. Posts
    154
    "UT might need to change it would be to do away with Mono (and C# and JS) and all the scripts I've been writing will have to be rewritten"

    Id almost count on it. Id say rewriting a few scripts and still building your games in Unity is the best case scenario you could be hoping for. Being told Unity simply cannot justify the enourmous amount of work required to remove their middleware / mono dependency or even worse that the only way they can comply is to open their architecture / provide compilable source code and as such would destroy their business advantage & IP are the kinds of results im more concerned about.

    Apple have a helluva problem on their hands right now. Think about SEGA's sonic the hedgehog 2 for example. Essentially this is an old version of the console cartridge running on a SEGA emulator all packaged up in an iPhone app (similar to the way the flash games were to be packaged). It is already in the top 10 games and no doubt making a small fortune. What is to stop SEGA now releasing EVERY SINGLE sega game in history on this embedded emulator platform in the space of a few days. All these are going to run below par when compared to other games not being restricted by an emulation layer and could in theory mean Sega end up a dominating force on the App Store.

    Im sure Apple would rather see a few quality games by EA and Gameloft that showcase the devices superior processing power than a few thousand clunky sega emulator dogs disappointing people by the thousands.


  11. Posts
    39
    what are you talking about? ...removing mono...?

    mono is one of unity's biggest strengths. if they get rid of mono then they can say goodbye to all their non-hardcore-programmer customers. which for sure are quite a lot. it would be totally against the philosophy (democratize game development, take the pain out of game development,...) they state everywhere on their website.

    i am sure that they won't get rid of mono. maybe there will be a non-mono iphone version but this also won't be very attractive anymore for many people.


  12. Posts
    47
    Quote Originally Posted by kakapo
    and what would be the point of having a separate unity for iphone which is incompatible to all other versions of unity? then i can simply use a different engine which already is compliant to apple's TOS.
    Which engine would you use that is already compliant
    with apple's TOS? Oolong? SIO2 may use Lua, which
    may be suspect under the current Apple OS4 beta TOS.

    If Apple gets tough with their TOS, unfortunately,
    Apple will frown on Mono. Hopefully Apple will have
    a change of heart. But given the choice between
    "a non-mono iphone version" and no Unity iPhone,
    would you really prefer "no Unity iPhone"?

    Would you use Oolong instead? Cocos2d?

    Quote Originally Posted by kakapo
    what are you talking about? ...removing mono...?

    mono is one of unity's biggest strengths. if they get rid of mono then they can say goodbye to all their non-hardcore-programmer customers. which for sure are quite a lot. it would be totally against the philosophy (democratize game development, take the pain out of game development,...) they state everywhere on their website.

    i am sure that they won't get rid of mono. maybe there will be a non-mono iphone version but this also won't be very attractive anymore for many people.


  13. Location
    UK
    Posts
    480
    Lka: Wait, what?? Free digital tuners?? I had to buy mine.. I haven't got nothing free from my gov.
    Sorry, but I'm going to have to pull you up on that double-negative there. If you haven't got nothing free, then you must have had something.

    It's a pet hate thing.


  14. Posts
    39
    Quote Originally Posted by cmonkey
    Which engine would you use that is already compliant with apple's TOS? Oolong? SIO2 may use Lua, which may be suspect under the current Apple OS4 beta TOS.

    If Apple gets tough with their TOS, unfortunately,
    Apple will frown on Mono. Hopefully Apple will have
    a change of heart. But given the choice between
    "a non-mono iphone version" and no Unity iPhone,
    would you really prefer "no Unity iPhone"?

    Would you use Oolong instead? Cocos2d?
    yes, i would evaluate oolong and sio2. i have no problem with a blender pipeline. or maybe i even would work on a simple engine on my own (with bullet and maybe the iphone version of ogre). if i already have to work with c/c++/obj-c anyway then this step also isn't that big anymore.

    by the way... i haven't looked into this yet but doesn't unity pro already have a c++ interface? can't this be used to do full games?

  15. Volunteer Moderator
    Posts
    23,708
    Quote Originally Posted by kakapo
    by the way... i haven't looked into this yet but doesn't unity pro already have a c++ interface?
    Nope. It has plugin support, where you can potentially use C++ to write plugins.

    can't this be used to do full games?
    Nope.

    --Eric
    SpriteTile: new tile system that works seamlessly with Unity 4.3 sprites
    FlyingText3D: dynamic 3D text with TTF fonts | Vectrosity: fast & easy line drawing
    Nifty utilities! Stitch terrains together - runtime model importing - file browser - fractal landscapes


  16. Posts
    47
    Hi kakapo,

    Personally, I'd prefer a Mono Unity iPhone
    to a non-mono Unity iPhone. But I'd also strongly
    prefer a non-mono Unity iPhone to no Unity iPhone at all

    I've started to look at Oolong, but the documentation
    directory contains literally 10 lines of terse text.
    Unity has a bit more documentation than Oolong ...


    However, if Unity iPhone disappears, I would
    certainly strongly consider Oolong.


    Quote Originally Posted by kakapo
    yes, i would evaluate oolong and sio2. i have no problem with a blender pipeline. or maybe i even would work on a simple engine on my own (with bullet and maybe the iphone version of ogre). if i already have to work with c/c++/obj-c anyway then this step also isn't that big anymore.

  17. Lka Lka is offline

    Location
    Italy
    Posts
    297
    Quote Originally Posted by RobbieDingo
    Lka: Wait, what?? Free digital tuners?? I had to buy mine.. I haven't got nothing free from my gov.
    Sorry, but I'm going to have to pull you up on that double-negative there. If you haven't got nothing free, then you must have had something.

    It's a pet hate thing.

    Ok.. so.. "I haven't got anything free from my gov."
    Is that better?


  18. Posts
    39
    i think a non-mono unity would also make the webplayer impossible. c/c++/obj-c are unsafe languages that can't easily be sandboxed.


  19. Posts
    450
    Quote Originally Posted by Lka
    Wait, what?? Free digital tuners?? I had to buy mine.. I haven't got nothing free from my gov.
    Sorry, I missed that response before. Yeah, the gov was giving out $50 vouchers for digital tuners. You call or mail them and they send you the vouchers. Then you go to the store with your voucher and they give you a digital tuner. There was a limit of two or three per household. My parents got three or four, but I gave them one of mine because I didn't need them.


  20. Location
    Newfoundland
    Posts
    1,043
    Quote Originally Posted by kakapo
    i think a non-mono unity would also make the webplayer impossible. c/c++/obj-c are unsafe languages that can't easily be sandboxed.
    If that kind of change were necessary to become compliant, I think it would be a iPhone specific thing. Besides Mono is c++ (right?), and supports c++, so is it too hard of a stretch to just implement c++ as the dev language for iPhone, and simply add the missing c# APIs as libraries for backward compatibility?

    Oh, and ISO standard C++ can't be boxed, but ISO compliant vendor specific implementations can be as boxed as you like

    Cheers,

    Galen
    Convolution

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