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iPhone Owners Demand To See Apple Source Code

kdawson posted more than 4 years ago | from the you're-a-brick dept.

Cellphones 298

CWmike writes "iPhone owners charging Apple and AT&T with breaking antitrust laws asked a federal judge this week to force Apple to hand over the iPhone source code, court documents show. The lawsuit, which was filed in October 2007, accuses Apple and AT&T of violating antitrust laws, including the Sherman Act, by agreeing to a multi-year deal that locks US iPhone owners into using the mobile carrier. On Wednesday, the plaintiffs asked US District Court Judge James Ware to compel Apple to produce the source code for the iPhone 1.1.1 software, an update that Apple issued in September 2007. The update crippled iPhones that had been unlocked, or 'jailbroken,' so that they could be used with mobile providers other than AT&T. The iPhone 1.1.1 'bricked' those first-generation iPhones that had been hacked, rendering them useless and wiping all personal data from the device. The plaintiffs say that the source code is necessary to determine whether all iPhones were given the same 1.1.1 update, and whether it was designed to brick all or just some hacked iPhones."

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First brick (1, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#30178062)

First brick

Re:First brick (5, Funny)

spammeister (586331) | more than 4 years ago | (#30178096)

All in all it's just another brick in the iWall

Re:First brick (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#30178274)

Coincidentally, Steve Jobs just delivered the latest keynote speech. [youtube.com] Check it out.

frist? (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#30178086)

freist.

looks like 2010 (0, Redundant)

recharged95 (782975) | more than 4 years ago | (#30178092)

may not be a good year for AT&T.

Wow (0, Redundant)

PmanAce (1679902) | more than 4 years ago | (#30178094)

Good.luck.with.that.

Re:Wow (2, Insightful)

clone53421 (1310749) | more than 4 years ago | (#30178168)

No kidding. The day Apple has to hand over their source code? That’d be a cold day in Hell...

Re:Wow (1)

rhathar (1247530) | more than 4 years ago | (#30178262)

I don't get what that saying is all about. I mean, doesn't it even get cold enough to snow in Texas? Seems cold enough to me.

Re:Wow (1)

Nadaka (224565) | more than 4 years ago | (#30178310)

cold indeed as frosty as the sheen on brushed aluminum.

Re:Wow (1)

chibiace (898665) | more than 4 years ago | (#30178408)

yes i dont see them doing this, at least not with any evidence, sure remove some lines here and there. though if they compiled it. but anyway it wont get to that.

It doesn't seem that unlikely to me. (4, Insightful)

pavon (30274) | more than 4 years ago | (#30178600)

It is known that this update caused problems on these phones. If it was intentional it would (supposedly) be a violation of the law. Assuming the judge thinks that the plaintiff's case has merit, and Apple cannot provide any other sort of evidence to the contrary, then it seems perfectly reasonable for the him to require that code be submitted as evidence. That doesn't mean that it will be open to the world, just to those people involved in the case who need to see it.

Re:It doesn't seem that unlikely to me. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#30178778)

IANAL but it is most likely that the source could would be made available to no one but a specific set of "experts" in a lock up room, and that the code would not even be seen by the lawyers in the case.

Re:It doesn't seem that unlikely to me. (1)

Lemming Mark (849014) | more than 4 years ago | (#30179180)

When Palm tried to use Apple's software in a way Apple didn't like (syncing the Pre with iTunes), it got broken pretty fast - more than once. It's a different situation - Pre is a competitor to the iPhone and Apple aren't obliged to support a competitor. But Apple was going out and changing iTunes to make it not sync with the Pre, it's not like changes Apple made in normal development just *happened* to break the Pre. Whereas nobody would have batted an eyelid if Apple had accidentally broken the Pre, a lot of people felt that deliberately breaking it was not something they were keen on.

Seeing how aggressively they've pursued that case, you can see how they might get accused of doing a similar thing for the iPhone. I can just about imagine that Apple would have the arrogance to take a hard line on iPhone jailbreaking but I'd be mightily surprised if they had the legal and PR foolhardiness to actually deliberately brick devices.

And I demand a pony and some ice cream! (3, Insightful)

Kenja (541830) | more than 4 years ago | (#30178118)

So long as we're demanding things we're not going to get, go for broke I say.

Phones have been hard wired to contracts for years now, the iPhone is only unique in that its popular so people actually care that only one service provider can support it. I'll bet a cookie that the terms of the service agreement let Apple & AT&T do more or less what ever they want with what is legally still their hardware.

So even if it comes out of all of this that the "bricking" was targeted, I doubt it will change anything in the end.

I agree (2, Informative)

NoYob (1630681) | more than 4 years ago | (#30178464)

the iPhone is only unique in that its popular so people actually care that only one service provider can support it.

How true. Anyway...

Apple did in fact approach the other carriers (IIRC), but they refused to put into their infrastructure the ability for the iPhone to download messages without the user having to dial up for them. The iPhone owners I've talked to really like that feature and it allows them to jump around messages without having to listen to them all from the beginning of the queue - one of these guys had quite a few voicemails and I can see why he didn't want to have to listen to them all and it allowed him to glance at them all and listen to the one from say, his doctor, without having to start from the beginning.

I refused to get an iPhone because I didn't like the terms and conditions and pricing of the package.

Re:I agree (1)

nine-times (778537) | more than 4 years ago | (#30178716)

I don't know if you're referring to some official bit of information, but the rumor at the time of the first iPhone release was that Apple approached Verizon before AT&T, but Verizon wouldn't agree to Apple's terms. The terms included:

  • No carrier branding on the device itself or the installed software
  • Apple wanted free reign over the product's design and feature set
  • Apple wanted the iPhone to have a small selection of simple plans with inexpensive data service (the original iPhones had unlimited data for $20/month)
  • Apple didn't want the phone to be subsidized and therefore wanted a share of the service plan
  • Apple wanted the carrier's help in creating some features (e.g. visual voicemail)

And yes, visual voicemail is nice.

"Trojan Horse" (1)

Crash Culligan (227354) | more than 4 years ago | (#30178878)

Call it fluffheaded fantasizing on my part, but I could envision the much-maligned iPhone 1.1.1 update as being part of a wonderful Trojan Horse attack.

And no, I don't mean against the industry of hacked or modded iPhones, I mean against the industry practice of locking phones to specific carriers in the first place.

Yeah, it's goofy, I know, but think about it: for a very long time, the mobile networks have been calling the shots and tilting the playing field their way. Phones would be designed to meet those specs and little else. Consider that it took Apple's entry into the cell phone market in the first place to generate this sort of outrage. If it were a lesser device, interchangeable with all the other services out there, do you think enough people would have cared to raise this kind of stink?

If it turns out that Apple really did write phone-bricking code into patch 1.1.1, and they had to do this in order to meet a contractual obligation with AT&T, then I doubt that Apple would be in as much trouble as AT&T. Furthermore, perhaps the FCC, FTC, or some other relevant GOV TLA will give up relinquishing [sic] their duties long enough to investigate just how much the mobile carriers have been stifling their own progress and growth and that of the mobile device industry in the name of quick profits. At least, that's the dream. It's vague and it's fuzzy, but its realization would make me inordinately happy.

Re:And I demand a pony and some ice cream! (1)

whoever57 (658626) | more than 4 years ago | (#30179138)

Phones have been hard wired to contracts for years now,

Oh, yes, that's why I have been able to take phones on my family plan and put another carrier's SIM card in them and have them work. Yes, really locked down. The phones were locked when I bought them, but the carrier gave me the code to unlock them at no charge to me.

Re:And I demand a pony and some ice cream! (2, Insightful)

mysidia (191772) | more than 4 years ago | (#30179144)

Phones have been hard wired to contracts for years now, the iPhone is only unique in that its popular so people actually care that only one service provider can support it.

Just because phones have been wired to contracts for years, doesn't mean it was ever legal, or that it failed to be illegal product tying.

It may very well be that it wasn't an issue until now, or there wasn't enough outrage or damage to actually bring the matter to the courts.

The iPhone is certainly a very unique product compared to most phones.

Also, even in the past when phones were tied to a contract, it was possible to unlock them and use the phones with other service, without arbitrary restrictions imposed by the manufacturer.

And certainly the manufacturer did not come back and set out to brick unlocked devices in a new sw update.

Same concept between the modded xboxes and this (1, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#30178122)

I wonder which side of the battle the general comments are going to take on this story vs the xbox banning story.

On one side (Xbox): Kick rocks, you modded, MS gimped your console.

I suspect for this article: Apple gimped your phone, die die die.

(P.S.: Posting this from my new iMac).

Re:Same concept between the modded xboxes and this (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#30178364)

Too bad you have to mod an iPhone to enable basic functionality.

It's even worse that because of the iPhone, Andrioid phones sold in the U.S. must themselves be hacked to enable multitouch.

Apple is an evil company. It as obvious when the sued Microsoft for daring to develop Windows, and it should be even more obvious now.

Die Apple Die.

Re:Same concept between the modded xboxes and this (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#30178874)

Forgive me, but I'm not familiar with the iPhone, as I don't own one, but what "basic functionality" are you missing without modding it?

It makes calls, it runs apps from the App Store, it does everything else Apple advertises it to do and it does everything it claims to do in the contract and EULAs you agreed to. Right? Or am I missing something, here?

Re:Same concept between the modded xboxes and this (3, Insightful)

im_thatoneguy (819432) | more than 4 years ago | (#30178612)

I believe there is an important difference:

XBox: Hack xbox, get banned from server (offline only).
iPhone: Hack iphone, phone no longer boots at all.

Re:Same concept between the modded xboxes and this (1)

ae1294 (1547521) | more than 4 years ago | (#30178684)

(P.S.: Posting this from my new iMac).

Smug son of a bitch...

Re:Same concept between the modded xboxes and this (1)

kamochan (883582) | more than 4 years ago | (#30178784)

27"? FFS, he has reason to be... I want one of those too :P

Re:Same concept between the modded xboxes and this (1)

ae1294 (1547521) | more than 4 years ago | (#30178862)

27"? FFS, he has reason to be... I want one of those too :P

It was a joke! I don't care if the man is happy to have a new toy was just poking fun cause I still use a 486sx16 to browse the net in 16 color mode using windows 3.1 and a mouse that has a small ball where the laser should be.

Re:Same concept between the modded xboxes and this (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#30179254)

Do I sense a tad of jealousy? :)

P.S. Posting this from my new shiny Mac Pro [apple.com] .

blah;npghnyyl;w/x

Lawsuits are really getting asinine (0, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#30178144)

Lawsuits are really getting asinine. There has to be some sort of additional punitive costs associated with stupid lawsuits like this. People do not honor the EULA, jailbreak their iPhones into iBricks and then cry out loud apple bricked their jailbroken devices. If you jailbreak - why the hell you have apple software to update your device?

Re:Lawsuits are really getting asinine (5, Insightful)

nine-times (778537) | more than 4 years ago | (#30178436)

On the other hand, consider the following formulation: You buy a product. It's your property. The person who sold it to you doesn't like the way you're using it, so they break the product you bought. They don't compensate you for your lost product or offer a refund.

Are you of the opinion that this is generally acceptable behavior on the part of the vendor?

Now yes, it's more complicated than that. You have software licensing terms, and you have warranty terms. People arguably broke their own phones while voiding their warranty. And IIRC, Apple wasn't very strict about refusing to replace bricked phones.

Re:Lawsuits are really getting asinine (5, Insightful)

jockeys (753885) | more than 4 years ago | (#30178674)

You buy a product. It's your property. The person who sold it to you doesn't like the way you're using it, so they break the product you bought.

Consider further: before buying the product, the vendor offers to pay for half of the product (making it much more accessible) if you sign a contract to use it the way they tell you to use it, for two whole years.

I'm not an Apple fanboy by any stretch, but people shouldn't sign the contract if they don't agree to the terms. 'Nuff said.

Re:Lawsuits are really getting asinine (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#30178780)

But once those two years are up, shouldn't you be able to unlock the phone and take it to a different carrier? If you think you should, CAN you do that with an iphone, or are they locked down good and forever?

Re:Lawsuits are really getting asinine (1)

bhagwad (1426855) | more than 4 years ago | (#30178866)

All that's very well, but customers are forced to buy the locked version. They should instead let customers buy the unlocked phone without a contract for $700 (say) if they want, and then say that if they bought the subsidized version, they can't unlock it/jailbreak it. But those who paid in full can do what they want with their device that they fully paid for.

Re:Lawsuits are really getting asinine (1)

DaveV1.0 (203135) | more than 4 years ago | (#30179036)

They should instead let customers buy the unlocked phone without a contract for $700

Why should they, besides the fact that you want them to do so?

Your statement boils down to "They should do this because that is what I want them to do because it benefits me and not them."

Re:Lawsuits are really getting asinine (1)

bhagwad (1426855) | more than 4 years ago | (#30179176)

Why should they, besides the fact that you want them to do so?

a) They can change carriers at will - maybe get a pre paid plan on their phone

b) They can just stop using the phone if they don't want to keep paying for two years

c) When they move to another country they can just pull out the SIM and dump in another local one

d) They can buy another phone after just a few months if they want and throw the last one into the dustbin.

Seriously dude, there are soooo many benefits to having a non contractual fully unlocked phone. I'm surprised I have to point them out to you.

Re:Lawsuits are really getting asinine (1)

FxChiP (687923) | more than 4 years ago | (#30179282)

Why should they, besides the fact that you want them to do so? Your statement boils down to "They should do this because that is what I want them to do because it benefits me and not them."

The entire practice of subsidizing the phone with a contract is designed with the purpose of making back the money lost on the phone in customer payments for continued service. That is to say:

- Customer wants to buy a phone.
- Provider sells the phone at a loss of about $100 (we'll say) but ties it to a contract binding the customer to pay $70 a month for, let's say, 24 months. Let's say only about $10 of that is markup or somesuch. They make their loss back after the first 12 and continue to make a profit for the next 12.

In this way, there was no real loss on the phone since it ends up making them more than they lost, just over a significant period of time. This is also why they're hesitant to allow an unlock and provider switch with the phone, and why the cost of premature termination is so freakin' high -- they're making their loss back on the phone at least, just not for your business. However, there is the risk that a customer will terminate early, eat the loss for the provider and then just take their business elsewhere.

HOWEVER, were the same company to sell unlocked phones at full price, it could go like this:

- Customer wants to buy a phone, unlocked.
- Provider sells the phone at zero loss, doesn't tie to a contract necessarily (but the customer can opt into one if they so choose -- there could be some incentive for doing so) but already is looking good out of the gate with one new customer and zero loss.

In that second instance, there's very little risk (if any) involved for the cell phone company besides the omnipresent one that the customer may choose to switch at any time -- which is still true for the first instance, it's just pricier.

tl;dr: all selling the phone unsubsidized and unlocked does is change who's paying for the phone and how much gain the provider actually makes in the end.

Re:Lawsuits are really getting asinine (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#30179076)

Customers aren't forced to do a damn thing. No one had a gun to your head forcing you to buy an iPhone. Don't like the deal? Don't buy it. Simple as that.

Disclaimer: I bought a first gen and a 3GS iPhone and am quite happy with them.

Re:Lawsuits are really getting asinine (1)

droopycom (470921) | more than 4 years ago | (#30179266)

Nobody forced anybody to buy anything.... Unless you claim Steve Jobs has psychic powers that forced you to buy iPhones....

Re:Lawsuits are really getting asinine (1)

nine-times (778537) | more than 4 years ago | (#30178940)

Nobody paid for half of my iPhone.

I didn't jailbreak my phone and my phone was never bricked. I don't really have a horse in this race. I'm really just suggesting that if Apple really bricked phones on purpose, that doesn't seem quite right to me, even if it's legal.

Re:Lawsuits are really getting asinine (1)

FxChiP (687923) | more than 4 years ago | (#30178960)

Consider even further: you do play by the rules and use the product as specified by AT&T and their contract for that two whole years. The way the iPhone is currently set up you still can't "legitimately" unlock it even though both sides have fulfilled all contractual obligations. So what happens when this is the case and you end up hacking a phone that is your property... only to have the phone bricked and totally useless (in theory) by the next software upgrade (yes, even if you should know better).

Re:Lawsuits are really getting asinine (4, Insightful)

BobMcD (601576) | more than 4 years ago | (#30179100)

I'd take it one farther than that. Consider also: Years down the road, AT&T gets out of the wireless phone business. Your iPhone still works great, and you're really attached to it. Even though the contract is expired and the service provider who's interests were being protected is defunct, you STILL cannot make use of something YOU legally own.

Re:Lawsuits are really getting asinine (1)

rampant mac (561036) | more than 4 years ago | (#30178860)

"On the other hand, consider the following formulation: You buy a product. It's your property. The person who sold it to you doesn't like the way you're using it, so they break the product you bought. They don't compensate you for your lost product or offer a refund."

Sounds a bit like the shitstorm from the XBox Live bans. Hard to believe there's terms of services on hardware devices, but it's a brave new world. :(

Re:Lawsuits are really getting asinine (1)

lymond01 (314120) | more than 4 years ago | (#30179018)

You buy a product. It's your property. The person who sold it to you doesn't like the way you're using it, so they break the product you bought.

What of the what, now? You buy a product with software that is titled iPhoneOS 1.1. You jailbreak the phone to do what you want to it. You can continue to do what you want to it, unless you decide to download 1.1.1 which means, with the jailbreak software you added, your phone no longer works and you need to wipe and reinstall.

So when you say "they break the product you bought" what you really mean is "by downloading a new version of the phone's OS, you broke the product you bought".

Unless you mean an owner was surprised they bricked their own phone, and that I can understand. But you know...you just customized heavily your own phone's software, then you apply someone else's code to it? What do you expect, really?

Re:Lawsuits are really getting asinine (1)

UnknowingFool (672806) | more than 4 years ago | (#30179264)

On the other hand, consider the following formulation: You buy a product. It's your property. The person who sold it to you doesn't like the way you're using it, so they break the product you bought. They don't compensate you for your lost product or offer a refund.

The main thing that is left out is that the iPhone was not "bricked" until users downloaded and installed the last patch. In this case it was 1.1.1. If the user did not download the last patch, it was fine. Small but important distinction.

Re:Lawsuits are really getting asinine (4, Insightful)

Zerth (26112) | more than 4 years ago | (#30178458)

I agree that anyone who jailbroke their phone was an idiot for allowing updates.

On the other hand, the difference between "Ooops, your changed binary got patched in the wrong place" and "if AuthenticBinary() then NukeDevice() else Patch()" is roughly the same as what happens to a burglar when he steps on the broken glass after breaking into my house Vs me planting bear traps next to each of my windows.

The first is schadenfreude, the latter legally actionable.

Re:Lawsuits are really getting asinine (1)

Zerth (26112) | more than 4 years ago | (#30178486)

Doh!

InAuthentic()

Re:Lawsuits are really getting asinine (1)

DaveV1.0 (203135) | more than 4 years ago | (#30178924)

If you live in a place where the latter is legally actionable, you live in a land of idiots. The burglar is responsible for his injuries in either case. In both cases, had he not been breaking the law and violating the homeowners rights, he would never have been injured.

Re:Lawsuits are really getting asinine (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#30179276)

And you have questionable intelligence, because that is legally actionable in pretty much every modern Western democracy. You cannot trap your home against burglars because you have no control over who triggers the trap. Did a burglar step onto your property and lose a leg to the bear trap, or did little Jimmy go to retrieve his baseball and step on the bear trap? Or, was your door trapped and the police entered for a lawful reason, only to trigger the trap?

You cannot trap your house.

Re:Lawsuits are really getting asinine (1)

mwvdlee (775178) | more than 4 years ago | (#30179014)

Why is leaving bear traps next to each window legally actionable? It isn't legally actionable if no burglar ever breaks into your house, so why should it be when a burgler does? It's not like you're actively hurting the burglar. If you have a gun in your house and the burglar takes the gun and then shoots himself with it, are you suddenly legally actionable? The burglar could have asked you to remove the bear traps, so it's not like he didn't have any options (yes, obviously the option would have ruined his purpose for being there, but that's not the issue).

Re:Lawsuits are really getting asinine (1)

BobMcD (601576) | more than 4 years ago | (#30179130)

Honestly, I think all you'd really need to do is:

1) Verify that bear traps are not barred by law, and

2) Post signs that say "WARNING: Bear traps in use! Do not enter!"

IANAL

Re:Lawsuits are really getting asinine (3, Informative)

Tom Boz (1570397) | more than 4 years ago | (#30179244)

The argument is that the use of deadly force is not allowed if the burglar isn't an immediate threat to the life of someone; and if you can't use deadly force yourself when they enter, you cannot do it through a mechanical device, either. See http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Katko_v._Briney [wikipedia.org] (The legal briefs linked on the bottom will probably be more useful). Obviously this ruling is by-state, and I have no idea about non-US countries.

Re:Lawsuits are really getting asinine (1, Insightful)

Anachragnome (1008495) | more than 4 years ago | (#30178502)

Regardless, if Apple and AT&T are guilty of anti-trust law violations, it only seems appropriate that their products are what expose them.

Did it ever occur to you that the EULA could have been DESIGNED to obscure such violations?

EULAs are bullshit. Corporations use them to deny customers LEGAL rights, intentionally complicate them with endless legalese, obfuscate their own questionable actions, and very often, use them as a place to bury shit that they simply do not want the customer to know yet are compelled by LAW to disclose.

And, yeah, people need to learn to read them before hitting the "accept" button. I am fully convinced that if everyone did, about 50% of the EULAs out there would NOT be accepted.

Re:Lawsuits are really getting asinine (1)

Jerry Smith (806480) | more than 4 years ago | (#30178650)

And, yeah, people need to learn to read them before hitting the "accept" button. I am fully convinced that if everyone did, about 50% of the EULAs out there would NOT be accepted.

I am fully convinced that if everyone was FORCED to read the EULA, about 50% of the customers would not continue the sale. Yes sir, I'm naming a LOT of customers lazy and/or stupid. (never mind the analphabetic and dyslectics, their percentage is quite low, not their fault anyway)

Re:Lawsuits are really getting asinine (4, Insightful)

Anachragnome (1008495) | more than 4 years ago | (#30178968)

On numerous occasions I have seen people get frustrated when installing an App/Game.

"What the fuck? The "agree" button is all grayed out. It won't let me click it!"

The problem? The developers made it so you had to actually scroll down the slider on the EULA before the "accept" button was functional. In short, they were frustrated because they DID NOT READ THE EULA, even after the the developers attempted to get them to do exactly that.

I once wrote a paper for a class on the very subject, "accept" buttons and EULAs. I followed up by doing a short poll of the class(hand up, or not) by asking a simple question.

"Do you read the EULAs provided with products?"

Not a single hand went up out of approx. 25 students. Take that as you will. I take it as just another reason why EULAs are totally ineffective in terms of what they are supposed to achieve, and as such, should be abandoned for such purposes.

Furthermore, I asked the students WHY they did not read the EULAs. Number one answer?

"I paid for it, what does it matter?"

Re:Lawsuits are really getting asinine (2, Insightful)

PitaBred (632671) | more than 4 years ago | (#30179238)

When you have an EULA for every device that says effectively the same thing, no matter from what manufacturer, do you really have a choice?

Re:Lawsuits are really getting asinine (1)

CannonballHead (842625) | more than 4 years ago | (#30178882)

Corporations use them to deny customers LEGAL rights

Name some? (not a troll, I'm curious... and stupid or ignorant and can't think of any off the top of my head)

Re:Lawsuits are really getting asinine (1)

Anachragnome (1008495) | more than 4 years ago | (#30179148)

The very first EULA I read and COMPLETELY refused to accept was a EULA that the makers of ICQ (an instant messenger) included with one of their upgrades.

While I do not have the EULA itself to quote, the EULA essentially gave the owners of ICQ the right to upload the entire contents of my hard drive. No, thank you.

The last version of ICQ I ever used was ICQ 2003b, so I imagine it was the following version, ICQPro, I think.

Essentially the makers of ICQ wanted to me to sign away my right to privacy in order to use their product (a FREE product, no less. Kind of implies what they were after in the first place. Not my money obviously.).

The thing that really ticked me off about that was that the EULA was such incomprehensible legalese that I had to read the damn thing several times before I actually understood what they were requiring of me (that obfuscation thing I mentioned).

Re:Lawsuits are really getting asinine (1)

mwvdlee (775178) | more than 4 years ago | (#30179118)

If I read every EULA, I'd have no time to use the product.

Thanks god I live in a country where EULA's aren't legally binding, since they're only disclosed after completion of sale.

and a pony (3, Funny)

commodoresloat (172735) | more than 4 years ago | (#30178152)

Dear Apple:

Please also include a pony with the next release of the iphone software.

kthxbi,

iPhone owners

Re:and a pony (4, Funny)

click2005 (921437) | more than 4 years ago | (#30178206)

Theres an app for that. iQuestrian Sports

Re:and a pony (0, Offtopic)

BigCorpsSUCK (1683050) | more than 4 years ago | (#30178914)

"My life is my own"?? LOL Do you drive? need a license, want to travel outside your country? get a passport. Have a job? pay taxes. Life of your own, only in the Matrix...

Re:and a pony (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#30179228)

Theres an app for that. iQuestrian Sports

I don't see it, guess it got rejected.

careful what you wish for (4, Funny)

mu51c10rd (187182) | more than 4 years ago | (#30178230)

That pony included with your iPhone will only eat iFood, use iWater, and can only be housed in iStable. Unfortunately, all of which must be purchased from Apple as well.

Re:careful what you wish for (1)

CannonballHead (842625) | more than 4 years ago | (#30178286)

Unfortunately, all of which must be purchased from Apple as well.

And will be overpriced... sorry, I mean will have "high end features" and "really good support." ;)

Re:careful what you wish for (1)

Manfre (631065) | more than 4 years ago | (#30178678)

Unfortunately, the pony is doomed to die. Even if the pony doesn't die of thirst waiting for iWater to be approved, it will starve because Apple quite possibly maybe think about implementing an app with similar features in the future, so they rejected iFood.

Re:careful what you wish for (0)

RoboRay (735839) | more than 4 years ago | (#30178724)

Don't forget the iShovel for the iShit.

Re:careful what you wish for (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#30179202)

There's a crap for that.

Re:careful what you wish for (0)

noidentity (188756) | more than 4 years ago | (#30178952)

That pony included with your iPhone will only eat iFood, use iWater, and can only be housed in iStable. Unfortunately, all of which must be purchased from Apple as well.

Unfortunately all you get with your iPony is iPonyShit, but that was rejected from the App Store so you'll have to deal with it on your own.

Re:careful what you wish for (1)

Demodian (658895) | more than 4 years ago | (#30179204)

Just be sure not to trim the iMane or change the color of your iPony, or Apple thugs will drive up and iBrick the poor thing to death, which will leave you with a large supply of iGlue...

Errr... (1)

Microlith (54737) | more than 4 years ago | (#30178190)

I don't recall the phones being bricked, but having been re-locked. I highly doubt Apple maliciously destroyed/disabled hardware for being jailbroken, so much as returned it to a known state with the update and the only people who noticed what it was doing were (unsurprisingly) those who significantly altered the state of the device.

I've always wondered (1)

sandro (30545) | more than 4 years ago | (#30178198)

how much anyone actually "owns" a cell phone.

Re:I've always wondered (2, Interesting)

Kenja (541830) | more than 4 years ago | (#30178244)

I own all my cell phones. But then I pay around 400$ for an unlocked model direct from the maker.

Re:I've always wondered (1)

sandro (30545) | more than 4 years ago | (#30178340)

But if they can reach across the ether and brick it, and get away with it, do you really own it?

Re:I've always wondered (1)

Kenja (541830) | more than 4 years ago | (#30178446)

They can't in my case. Even if they could, it wouldn't be allowed by the contract and I could throw a fit and file a law suite. All I get from my cell phone provider is a SIM card. That is the extent of their hardware. If I want to change providers, I just change cards. And since the unlocked models of most high end phones are tri-band, I can even do that in another country without any issues.

However, needing to manually do firmware updates can be a hassle. But I think its worth it.

Re:I've always wondered (1)

knappe duivel (914316) | more than 4 years ago | (#30178524)

But if they can reach across the ether and brick it, and get away with it, do you really own it?

Yes, then you really are the owner. Of a brick.

Good luck with that (1)

captaindomon (870655) | more than 4 years ago | (#30178202)

Let me know how it works out for you-

Shooting the moon or their foot (1)

tverbeek (457094) | more than 4 years ago | (#30178294)

They have to know that they're never going to get the source code. A) It'd be an incredibly earth-shattering precedent, and B) it's beside the point to what they're charging. It doesn't matter of Apple and AT&T colluded to brick one hacked phone, odd-numbered hacked-phones, or even hacked phones on Verizon's network. If the issue is the practice of tying the purchase of an iPhone to the purchase of an AT&T service plan, the source code is not relevant. It's a contractual question, not a technical one. This kind of tangential waste of time on a pointless bit of discovery that's obviously not germane to the charges, but only serves to yank the chain of the defendant, could backfire by pissing off the judge.

Re:Shooting the moon or their foot (4, Insightful)

nametaken (610866) | more than 4 years ago | (#30178440)

I'm not sure it'd be totally irrelevant. If you'd go so far as to brick my phone as an "f-you" to protect your partners network exclusivity, I'd guess that maybe that's an argument for unfair collusion of the antitrust sort? I am not a lawyer, of course.

Re:Shooting the moon or their foot (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#30178516)

If the issue is the practice of tying the purchase of an iPhone to the purchase of an AT&T service plan, the source code is not relevant.

It can be relevant to proving what was done. It can prove a particular action was deliberate rather than a bug.

Re:Shooting the moon or their foot (2, Informative)

MarkvW (1037596) | more than 4 years ago | (#30178550)

"They have to know that they're never going to get the source code."
While I don't know what they "have to know," I do know that source code does get disclosed in litigation--oftentimes under protective orders to avoid commercial disclosure. The breath test machine cases are an excellent example of this. Copyright cases are another kind of case where this kind of material gets disclosed.

Saying (in italics) that "the source code is not relevant" does not advance the argument. The test for evidence discovery is whether or not the material is evidence or TENDS TO LEAD to evidence. That interpretation cannot be made without a thorough understanding of the issues and sub issues that the case will (or may) spawn.

As always, take all slashdot legal opinions with an enormous grain of salt.

Re:Shooting the moon or their foot (1)

systemeng (998953) | more than 4 years ago | (#30179190)

I once was subcontracted by a friend to examine source code provided to him under court seal about what I believe had been a software patent case but might have been misappropriation of trade secrets or something similar. The source code was not released publicly, it was just released to my friend who was serving as a consultant to the plaintiff who we will call party A. In my opinion, party A had patented linear interpolation and the whole thing should have been thrown out but that wasn't what the case was about. What the case was about was whether party B had copied party A's obscurely implemented form of linear interpolation. The details of the algorithm were so wacky that it was obvious that party B had copied A's implementation since no sane person would have done it the way A did with the same variable names. What I couldn't figure out in the whole thing is why anybody would copy something like that. B wouldn't have gotten into trouble if they had derived the entire thing from first principles and used the obvious textbook implementation. Instead, they used one that looked almost certainly like it had been stolen directly from Party A's source code.

At any rate, I have seen with my own eyes that code is often released under Non Disclosure Agreement and court seal to neutral parties representing an adversarial position for the purpose of resolving a dispute. I think that this Apple request will likely generate source code which will be reviewed by an expert. It certainly won't result in GNU-iPhone 1.0 unless someone royally screws up. Were that screw up to occur and the code was accidentally released, whoever was responsible had better move somewhere that doesn't have an extradition treaty with the U.S.

Re:Shooting the moon or their foot (1, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#30179128)

They have to know that they're never going to get the source code. A) It'd be an incredibly earth-shattering precedent, and B) it's beside the point to what they're charging. It doesn't matter of Apple and AT&T colluded to brick one hacked phone, odd-numbered hacked-phones, or even hacked phones on Verizon's network. If the issue is the practice of tying the purchase of an iPhone to the purchase of an AT&T service plan, the source code is not relevant. It's a contractual question, not a technical one. This kind of tangential waste of time on a pointless bit of discovery that's obviously not germane to the charges, but only serves to yank the chain of the defendant, could backfire by pissing off the judge.

It isn't an earth shattering precedent. There was a case earlier this year involving the source code for a breathalyzer machine. It was covered here on /.. This is by far not the only case where "trade secretes" have been so examined. Another example would be the case between Waste Management and SAP.

As for B, this is NOT a contractual issue. The issue is that the plaintiffs have accused Apple of violating Federal anti-trust laws. As evidence, they suggest that the source code for the patch was predatory towards non-AT&T customers. Furthermore, if the source code does demonstrate that Apple acted in such a way, I can not imagine how Apple will prevail in this case.

Re:Shooting the moon or their foot (1)

gnasher719 (869701) | more than 4 years ago | (#30179246)

They have to know that they're never going to get the source code. A) It'd be an incredibly earth-shattering precedent...

SCOs lawyers received a server from IBM with every single version that IBM ever produced of the software both companies were arguing about.

In unrelated news... (1)

Kardos (1348077) | more than 4 years ago | (#30178384)

"The plaintiffs say that the source code is necessary to determine whether all iPhones were given the same 1.1.1 update, and whether it was designed to brick all or just some hacked iPhones."

In unrelated news, underhanded c contest winners' employability sky-rockets...

Antitrust? How? And copyright cancellation? WTF? (1)

weston (16146) | more than 4 years ago | (#30178444)

So, yeah, the iPhone's great and everything, but I don't think Apple has even 20% of the smartphone market. How exactly does an antitrust suit work against a player that doesn't have anything resembling monopoly power in the market in which it operates?

Not only that -- why exactly would relief by gained by Apple turning over the source to the iPhone OS? Canceling copyright is pretty serious business, there'd better be a pretty compelling reason to do it, both in terms of justifying the cancellation and strength of benefits that'd follow it.

  I don't like some of the Apple/AT&T restrictions either. Or the idea of signing a contract with AT&T, particularly for the advertised prices. That doesn't mean they've broken the law.

Re:Antitrust? How? And copyright cancellation? WTF (2, Informative)

db32 (862117) | more than 4 years ago | (#30178554)

There are anti-trust laws dealing with that two company colluding stuff. It isn't far off from the other flak that has been coming up lately over the various exclusive phone deals. AT&T/Apple aren't alone on this and there has a been a surge in complaints about this against all vendors. The anti-trust laws are written specifically to prevent these kinds of things from happening and they are just tap dancing around the laws at the moment with silly excuses.

Re:Antitrust? How? And copyright cancellation? WTF (1)

s73v3r (963317) | more than 4 years ago | (#30178876)

So what's the difference between something like this and say, the G1 only being offered on T-Mobile?

Re:Antitrust? How? And copyright cancellation? WTF (1)

Duradin (1261418) | more than 4 years ago | (#30179006)

Well, you see, Apple is Teh Evil.

Google,T-Mobile, and the G1 are the most awesomest awesome ever conceived of.

Well, until they actually gain some appreciable market share and then we must deride them for the very same things we praised them for once we find the next geeky savior of the world.

Re:Antitrust? How? And copyright cancellation? WTF (1)

BobMcD (601576) | more than 4 years ago | (#30179164)

I believe the bricking is the difference. Does Google deliberately brick G1's at T-Mobile's behest to keep them from going to the competition?

Re:Antitrust? How? And copyright cancellation? WTF (1)

mkettler (6309) | more than 4 years ago | (#30178836)

Minor Nit-pick: the iPhone only has 13.7% of the global smartphone market, however the iPhone has a much higher market share in the North America 23.3% (both figures are q2, 2009 canalsys). Since this is a US suit, NA numbers matter more.

That said, RIM still has more market share in the US, and Nokia has more globally.

However, market share doesn't really matter here.

Section 1 of the Sherman anti-trust act is about agreements that unfairly restrain trade at an inter-state level. You do not have to be a monopoly to violate that section. I strongly expect they're trying to pin Apple and AT&T with drafting an agreement that unfairly restrains trade by preventing buyers of the phone from switching carriers.

Section 2 is all about monopolies, but that section is not the only kind of violation covered under the Sherman anti-trust act.

Not necessary (1, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#30178520)

The plaintiffs say that the source code is necessary to determine whether all iPhones were given the same 1.1.1 update, and whether it was designed to brick all or just some hacked iPhones

That's obviously false, as any decent programmer can tell you. The plaintiffs should stop being lazy, disassemble the code, and find out for themselves.

Hahahahaha! (4, Interesting)

njfuzzy (734116) | more than 4 years ago | (#30178728)

So... Apple says "Don't Jailbreak your phone" and as one of the reason says "We don't QA test against that". Then people do it anyhow, and updates break their phone (as warned). And those people sue, believing that the bugs that Apple said they couldn't test against were intentional? Funny stuff.

Good luck with that (1)

noewun (591275) | more than 4 years ago | (#30178738)

Microsoft will produce Windows source code before this happens.

Wasted effort in the wrong place. (4, Insightful)

aristotle-dude (626586) | more than 4 years ago | (#30178752)

Why don't they instead petition the FCC to force all carriers to only sell unlocked phones in the US?

Why not force the carriers to offer official unlocks for all currently locked phones?

I've been making some humble efforts on behalf of my fellow Canadians with Fido and the CRTC.

http://forums.macrumors.com/showthread.php?t=817293 [macrumors.com]

I was able to get as far as getting a phone call from the office of the president of my carrier Fido. If enough people did the same with their carriers and their country's regulatory body, we might actually get somewhere.

Call it what it is! (2, Insightful)

BigCorpsSUCK (1683050) | more than 4 years ago | (#30178820)

It would save these Big companies (Apple, Microsoft, Sony, etc) a lot of grief from the public if they would just say that you are leasing the hardware and not buying it! Selling it to you give one the impression that you can do whatever you want with the hardware. Which is not the case. They produce the hardware and want to control how is used for the life of the device. Which they want to control as well.

WTF, people? (0, Troll)

Qubit (100461) | more than 4 years ago | (#30178822)

Seriously, if you want an open phone then go look at Maemo [wikipedia.org] and the n900 [nokia.com] . That's some slick shit right there -- two cameras! Crazy Sauce! -- and they even give you root. Hallelujah!

The iPhone? You actually had any aspersions at all that you weren't buying some slick Disney-fied locked-down hood-welded-shut art object? Are you missing a more than a few brain cells?

Me, I'd like an open phone, but the n900 is a little pricey so I'm trying to find a used HTC G1 for el cheapo that I can root and run Replicant [osuosl.org] on. Sure, you have to find a way to root the Android phones, but once you do I'm pretty sure that T-mobile isn't going to try to castrate the cojones of your phone by pushing an update to you. They're going to happily take your monthly, no-contract fee and then let you use your phone in relative peace.

I love it. All these iPeoples lining up to plunk down their cash for some pretty looking but pretty-much-guaranteed-to-restrict-your-ass piece of hardware. You know that they have a word for this kind of thing, right? It's called a Siren [wikipedia.org] , and you need to get your crew or your mates or whoever you hang with to keep you off the special sauce that they're serving up, piping hot.

Let's just take a look at that complaint "locks US iPhone owners into using the mobile carrier." Well no shit, Sherlock, time to fire up Spotlight and search for n00b on your Mac.

How many times do us so-called "crazy Free Software folks" have to remind you that you don't get Freedom because BillyG or SteveyJ wants to give you a Christmas bonus. You get capital-F Freedom with your phone and your software when you jump down, turn around, and buy and use the phone that gives you that Freedom. You want source code? Sure, it's all here, including the build scripts so that you can verify that you're building what you want to build and running what you want to run on your phone. If you can't root that phone and hold onto root, then Just Say No.

Time and time again this happens, and every time I hope that people will get the message, but it just never seems to sink in. So hold on just a second, let me slip into these asbestos pants and then you can go ahead and overturn an Apple Cart of fanboi vitriol on me. One day...one day maybe you'll thank us.

I demand to see Kristen Stewart naked! (2, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#30178930)

As the owner of a copy of Twilight I have the right to see her naked. My friends and I plan to file a class action lawsuit against the makers of the movie and Miss Stewart. As film owners our rights are being ignored and we won't stand for it!

Source code leaked (1)

noidentity (188756) | more than 4 years ago | (#30178998)

The source code was leaked, unfortunately it's not too exciting:

// config.h
#define BUILD_FOR_IPHONE
#define CPU_ARCH ARM

// ...

Ask away... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#30179098)

I think the answer will be "no".

How is my Sprint HTC Touch Pro... (1)

joocemann (1273720) | more than 4 years ago | (#30179196)

... any different?

Even if HTC offers the same model to another carrier, they aren't offering the SPRINT one. And in line with that is the limit to Spring. I cannot use it on another network if I choose. I am forced to exclusively use my hardware on a Sprint network.

Anti-trust crap happens all day all over the place. It is almost funny to see how few of these blatant offenses to competition actually get pursued.

Re:How is my Sprint HTC Touch Pro... (2, Interesting)

joocemann (1273720) | more than 4 years ago | (#30179284)

In response/support to what I was saying, a true competitive market is as this:

Some companies make phones

Some companies offer service

That's it. The europeans do it well. I loved it when I lived there. My phone had a swiss number, a german number, and an italian number. All depending on which SIM card I put in it. I paid for minutes and texts as I used them.

Why oh why is the american business model becoming "do as much anti-trust as you can, abuse the consumer, and pay penalties if you're caught".

WHY? Because we're not actually pursuing the blatant infringes on competition and the penalties are LOWER than the benefits reaped.

Everyone is doing it. Microsoft, IBM, big oil, big telco. Anyone on the planet that has used AT&T knows from their customer service that they don't care about you at all and don't need to because they are part of gigantic oligopolies.

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