updated 10:20 am EDT, Thu July 15, 2010
Apple builds FaceTime for non-iPhone devices
Apple is changing the way FaceTime works to support a camera-equipped iPod touch and possibly the iPad as well, escaped details show. Rather than require a phone number as on the iPhone 4, it will use one or more e-mail accounts attached to an Apple ID, which in turn will be linked to the device. BGR understands that the approach would depend on a new push notification system in iOS 4.1 to handle requests on non-phone hardware.
It's not clear if Apple would change the iPhone 4's implementation to work the same way, although it's considered likely to promote the use of FaceTime across the entire iOS platform.
The approach suggests Apple plans to avoid taking the app route on all iOS devices, instead making it behave more like a phone. It would also provide an avenue to integrating FaceTime with Macs, whether through iChat or the OS itself, although there haven't yet been any indicators that Mac OS X is being changed. FaceTime is considered an open standard and could reach non-Apple hardware and software through a similar route.