Joe Hewitt, the man at the heart of the development team for the iPhone Facebook app, has left the project. While he’s still working at Facebook, he just can’t face dealing with Apple’s tricksy attitude to iPhone development. In a bit of social media drama, he announced his decision via Twitter.
Hewitt said in a Twitter update: “Time for me to try something new. I’ve handed the Facebook iPhone app off to another engineer, and I’m onto a new project.”
He explained his decision in more than 140 characters to Techcrunch:
“My decision to stop iPhone development has everything to do with Apple’s policies. I respect their right to manage their platform however they want, however I am philosophically opposed to the existence of their review process. I am very concerned that they are setting a horrible precedent.”
Hewitt was the driving force behind the development of the Facebook application. However, he has made it clear that the next version of the app, which will include push notifications, is still on schedule.
The good news is that Hewitt is remaining at Facebook and is turning his obvious skill (he was also involved in the development of Firefox) towards another project for the social network.
Hewitt has admitted (again via Twitter) that his move away from iPhone puts him in the minority: “For every dev that leaves iPhone in frustration, 1000 new ones join up. iPhone is an unstoppable train regardless of how much we complain.”