I am honestly lost here. A few years ago, Apple was a nobody in the smartphone (or the whole mobile phone) game.
Then they made a name by launching the iPhone, which to me are like Macs - can do what PC's can but a little bit better but a hell of a lot more expensive. Yet there was something worse with iPhones - it was several years behind. Yes, it looked shiny and pretty but if your would really consider it as a smartphone and compare it with what other smartphones can do, its pretty much like a brick. (not until very, very recently - no tethering, no MMS, no video capture, no cut-copy-paste, no Bluetooth file transfer (still not available)... unless jailbroken)
Then, along came the App Store. This is gold. The store houses 50,000+ Apps and growing everyday. In nine months it got 1 billion downloads. For me, this is what really set the iPhone apart from the rest. A lot of Apps may be non-sense but with lots of them for as low as 99c to $2 and even more for free, you're bound to find what you're looking for and even more for a very reasonaable price. This is one of the reasons I love my iPod Touch. (I am no Apple fanboy because of how freakishly expensive and incompatible with everything they are, but the App Store I love)
And here is where I am at lost. The Palm Pre debuted with 18 applciations and now has 30 in its App Catalog. Perhaps they have not realized yet the potential in this aspect of smartphones? I don't think so. They are way smarter than that. Nokia launched Ovi but it was a Day One failure. With the several versions of Symbian and Nokia phones available, I doubt Nokia can come up with anything like the App Store anytime soon.
But my question is why are other smarphone manufacturers making development kits more accessible for and attracting more developers for their own phones?