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Apple's iPhone Developer License Agreement Revealed

Soulskill posted more than 4 years ago | from the you-agree-not-to-be-google dept.

Iphone 483

nigham writes "The EFF is publicly disclosing a version of Apple's iPhone developer program license agreement. The highlights: you can't disclose the agreement itself (the EFF managed to get it via the Freedom of Information Act thanks to NASA's recent app), Apple reserves the right to kill your app at any time with no reason, and Apple's liability in any circumstance is limited to 50 bucks. There's also this gem: 'You will not, through use of the Apple Software, services or otherwise create any Application or other program that would disable, hack, or otherwise interfere with the Security Solution, or any security, digital signing, digital rights management, verification or authentication mechanisms implemented in or by the iPhone operating system software, iPod Touch operating system software, this Apple Software, any services or other Apple software or technology, or enable others to do so.' The entire agreement (PDF) is up at the EFF's site."

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Google's apps (-1, Troll)

sopssa (1498795) | more than 4 years ago | (#31413436)

Soulskill's "you-agree-not-to-be-google" from the dept. line is actually interesting. Google is clearly violating the "enable others to do so" policy by linking to that information, and with a few links to http://www.eff.org/files/20100302_iphone_dev_agr.pdf would most likely be distributing the html copy of that pdf file.

As a person who loves Mac OS X, iPhone and will absolutely buy the upcoming iPad and hump it in bed when I'm sad, I don't want to see Apple having to battle with a giant like Google about this license. It's just not fair for the good and awesome guys like Apple.

Re:Google's apps (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#31413498)

Yeah, and Apple really cares about you too...

Chump$

Jeez man get a grip (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#31413538)

"As a person who loves Mac OS X, iPhone and will absolutely buy the upcoming iPad and hump it in bed when I'm sad"
First post not first scare, come to think of it you are not allowed to grip anything.

ASS POS is my name (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#31413552)

I clicked on this story knowing you had the fr0sty p1ss, you fucking cheater. I can only imagine how it breaks your heart to know Appel has M$ beat hands down in the march to fascism.

Sieg Hail!

Re:Google's apps (1)

SOdhner (1619761) | more than 4 years ago | (#31413566)

The only actual reference to Google in the PDF is where it says that you have to abide by Google's rules when using their Mobile Maps thing.

sopssa isn't trolling... He's trying to be funny. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#31413640)

sopssa isn't trolling. He's just trying to be funny and sarcastic. But he's not funny, so I see why so many of you, including at least one moderator, misinterpreted his pathetic attempt at humor.

What's the big deal? (3, Insightful)

Em Emalb (452530) | more than 4 years ago | (#31413480)

I'm not sure what the uproar is about...if you agree to develop apps for Apple's devices, this is the agreement you sign. If you don't like it, don't make apps for Apple products.

Am I missing something? This has nothing at all to do with "My Rights Online"...IMNSHO.

Re:What's the big deal? (1, Insightful)

sopssa (1498795) | more than 4 years ago | (#31413514)

Of course, if you as a little guy always want to get fucked over by the big guys.

'OLY 'RAP !! IT'S PATCH TUESDAY PRETTIES !!! (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#31413694)

Patch 'em, if you want tom survive the night, maggots !!!

Re:What's the big deal? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#31413720)

Simple solution: don't develop stuff for iPhone. Then you don't need to agree with the license.

Re:What's the big deal? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#31413884)

don't buy a subsidized iphone so you "own" the hardware and use an alternative toolchain. problem solved.

Re:What's the big deal? (2, Insightful)

sopssa (1498795) | more than 4 years ago | (#31413922)

That's like saying don't develop your games for Windows and allowing Microsoft to set a lot of restrictions and control over it. There's little next to nothing more options. It still doesn't mean that big corporations should be allowed to fuck over the small guys and put them into some asshole contract.

Re:What's the big deal? (2, Insightful)

Ephemeriis (315124) | more than 4 years ago | (#31413880)

Of course, if you as a little guy always want to get fucked over by the big guys.

Nobody is forcing you to develop anything for any platform. If you want to develop for the iPhone, you can, but you have to agree to Apple's terms. You don't like their terms? You don't get to develop for the iPhone. Well, at least not through the official channels.

It's Apple's phone. They don't have to allow anyone to develop for it. They could keep it a completely closed platform with no 3rd party apps at all if they wanted to. That's their choice to make, not yours (barring jailbreaks/cracks/whatever). Obviously some people don't like such a closed platform... And it will affect their sales... But that's something Apple needs to weigh when making their policies.

Re:What's the big deal? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#31413942)

This is otherwise okay, but I think that it should be made more clear to the customers that the phone is not yours, no matter how much you pay for it. It is Apple's phone and you are only renting it to you.

Re:What's the big deal? (4, Insightful)

sopssa (1498795) | more than 4 years ago | (#31413984)

Obviously, that's the legal side of things.. I still don't think it's the correct thing to do. Apple has become the most dickhead company in the industry, far surpassing Microsoft or any other. Completely locked-down model, asshole contracts with developers etc.. Sure they're legally allowed to do so, but it's assholish move nevertheless.

Fundamental flaw: it is not *APPLE*'s phone (2, Insightful)

DrYak (748999) | more than 4 years ago | (#31414068)

It's Apple's phone. They don't have to allow anyone to develop for it. They could keep it a completely closed platform with no 3rd party apps at all if they wanted to. That's their choice to make, not yours

Sorry, no. You're making a fundamental flaw in your reasonning:
IT. IS. NOT. APPLE'S. PHONE.
It is a phone which happens to be designed by Apple. But it belongs to the person who bought it.
Also, in addition of that, clauses in a software's license which forcibly restrict what you're allowed to do with it. In several jurisdiction, they shouldn't be able to order "don't do that with out SDK".

The only thing which is theirs and remain under their possession and control is their service.

In short: They have to refuse presence of some Apps on their on-line distribution channel (like suddenly refusing and banning any adult-oriented App - it's a crappy decision but not a fundamentally wrong one).
But they have no rights over what end users does with Phones and SDKs, once in their possession, except the limitation imposed by laws such as copyright (the users cannot distribute copies of the SDK, unless their receive proper license. They can create whatever they want)

Re:Fundamental flaw: it is not *APPLE*'s phone (5, Insightful)

Raffaello (230287) | more than 4 years ago | (#31414298)

Apple is not preventing, nor can they legally prevent, developers from developing apps for their own iPhones or other people's iPhones. This is why there are many apps available for so called "jailbroken" iPhones.

This developer agreement is for developers who choose to develop apps for Apple iPhone App Store. You do not need to buy apps from this app store to use your iPhone. You do not need to distribute apps you develop through the apple app store.

People are free to do what they want if they buy a full price iPhone, and many have jailbroken theirs to work with other carriers as is their right, and written and/or downloaded apps that were written by developers who did not have to and did not agree to the license agreement linked to in TFA.

However, if you do choose to develop apps for apples own online iphone app store, then yes, you do need to follow apple's rules, because, yes, IT IS APPLE'S APP STORE, not yours.

Re:What's the big deal? (1)

Tharsman (1364603) | more than 4 years ago | (#31414526)

It's Apple's phone. They don't have to allow anyone to develop for it. They could keep it a completely closed platform with no 3rd party apps at all if they wanted to. That's their choice to make, not yours (barring jailbreaks/cracks/whatever). Obviously some people don't like such a closed platform... And it will affect their sales... But that's something Apple needs to weigh when making their policies.

Actually, it's your phone, not theirs, but it's their market and their SDK that happens to not sold, just licensed at no cost (not the same as being given away for free.)

Re:What's the big deal? (3, Insightful)

jcombel (1557059) | more than 4 years ago | (#31413584)

the big deal is that there is an entire marketplace being controlled by a party with interests that conflict with the entrepreneurs that would be setting up shop in that marketplace.

to rephrase the mantra: if microsoft had these requirements on developing software for Windows operating systems, you'd be typing up a furious reply condemning "M$."

Re:What's the big deal? (4, Insightful)

MightyYar (622222) | more than 4 years ago | (#31413728)

If MS had this policy, they wouldn't control 90% of the market. Apple's policy is more like how when you go to Disney World everything is controlled by Disney.

Re:What's the big deal? (4, Insightful)

BrokenHalo (565198) | more than 4 years ago | (#31414152)

Apple's policy is more like how when you go to Disney World everything is controlled by Disney.

Apple has always made a big thing of pointing its marketing at "creative types" who supposedly think outside the box. This just goes to confirm that what this really means is "You'll think outside the box in the way that WE tell you to, dammit".

Is it just me, or has Apple become more and more oppressive to users and developers over the last couple of years? Barely a day seems to go by when they haven't fucked someone over.

[Disclaimer: I am not a Microsoft shill - this is typed on a 2nd-hand 2.16GHz MacBook, and my desktop machine runs Arch Linux.]

Re:What's the big deal? (4, Insightful)

Raffaello (230287) | more than 4 years ago | (#31414434)

"Power tends to corrupt, and absolute power corrupts absolutely. Great men are almost always bad men." - Lord Acton

When Apple was the underdog, they weren't in a position to bend developers to their will. Now that they are in the driver's seat wrt mp3 players and smart phones, they can. Most of the time you'll find that when people can do something that is in their interest but screws other people over, they will choose to do that thing, because most people are quite selfish. Apple as a group of self-interested people (a.k.a., a corporation) is no exception. Moreover, the law in the US actually requires that corporations always act in the best financial interests of their shareholders, which has always been interpreted by courts to mean that the corporation has a positive duty to maximize profit in any legal way.

Apple now has the market power to impose draconian license agreements on their developers. Apple takes this option because having the abilities that this license agreement gives them (e.g., ability to arbitrarily remove any app at any time) increases profit - for example, no lengthy court proceedings over app removal, no defending lawsuits from flyover bible thumpers who think app X is too explicit for their 7 year old children (and your 7 year old is using your iPhone why exactly?)

When we enshrine selfishness as the highest legal good it should come as no surprise that corporations act selfishly.

Re:What's the big deal? (3, Interesting)

Em Emalb (452530) | more than 4 years ago | (#31413902)


to rephrase the mantra: if microsoft had these requirements on developing software for Windows operating systems, you'd be typing up a furious reply condemning "M$."

Actually, I wouldn't. See, I'm not a developer. I'm in the industry (security/networking) but in this instance, I'm considered a consumer. And the agreement that Apple has devs sign is good IMO, because of the "end user" protections that are in place.

But what do I know, I mean, I'm not a developer.

Re:What's the big deal? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#31414324)

Dosent MSFT has a clause where they stated you cannot develop products that compete with their own. I remember this from MFC days. Dont know if that is still there, but I thought that was pretty bad.

Re:What's the big deal? (5, Insightful)

Karlt1 (231423) | more than 4 years ago | (#31414340)

to rephrase the mantra: if microsoft had these requirements on developing software for Windows operating systems, you'd be typing up a furious reply condemning "M$."

How is this any different from the requirements for developing for the XBox, Sony Playstation/PSP, or the Wii/Gameboy?

Re:What's the big deal? (4, Interesting)

grub (11606) | more than 4 years ago | (#31413622)

Actually that agreement has some pretty decent customer protection clauses. ie.: not to use Push Notifications to spam, phish or advertise, not to use unnecessary traffic on the cellular network.

One that caught my eye was no VoIP over the cellular network.

Re:What's the big deal? (1, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#31413864)

They put out a new license agreement a couple months ago that doesn't restrict voipoc.

Re:What's the big deal? (1)

grub (11606) | more than 4 years ago | (#31414024)


They put out a new license agreement a couple months ago that doesn't restrict voipoc.

So GoogleVoice will be available someday? I already have Skype on my phone with a 3G unrestricter (jailbroken)

Re:What's the big deal? (2, Informative)

Karlt1 (231423) | more than 4 years ago | (#31414374)

So GoogleVoice will be available someday? I already have Skype on my phone with a 3G unrestricter (jailbroken)

AT&T is already allowing VOIP over 3G.

http://share.skype.com/sites/en/2009/10/good_move_att.html [skype.com]

Re:What's the big deal? (3, Insightful)

beelsebob (529313) | more than 4 years ago | (#31413740)

I also don't get why there's any uproar at all about "if you make apps for our store, please don't try to hack our store". I'm pretty sure that any shop like Tesco will have at least an implicit "if you want to sell stuff in our shop, please don't make one that disables all our security scanners" in their agreement.

What do you expect? (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#31413868)

Slashdot is freetard central, where if it isn't free (and crappy) then they are not interested.

Re:What do you expect? (2, Insightful)

jedidiah (1196) | more than 4 years ago | (#31414196)

Of course... the Apple cult member's first retort: accuse you of being a pirate or a freeloader.

The fact that I want to do whatever I choose with MY PROPERTY does not make me a "freetard". It makes me a free man.

So now freetard will be redefined (newspeak) to include anyone that wants to install random non-blessed 3rd party apps on their Mac.

Re:What's the big deal? (5, Interesting)

Speare (84249) | more than 4 years ago | (#31413976)

The only thing I don't like about the agreement (as summarized here) is that the agreement itself cannot be disclosed. That level of secrecy is not necessary. I'm just surprised that nobody else has gotten a copy of this legal document, decided not to sign it, and gave it to WikiLeaks already. Why does it take a Freedom of Information Act just to learn what kinds of terms you're going to face if you think about entering the development program?

Re:What's the big deal? (0, Troll)

elrous0 (869638) | more than 4 years ago | (#31414210)

Can you imagine what a shitstorm this would cause if MS tried this? They get bitchslapped for even INCLUDING their own software with their OS, much less actively blocking all competitors and refusing to let anyone install software without their approval. I guess if you're Apple it's okay to engage in anti-competitive business practices.

Re:What's the big deal? (1)

linguae (763922) | more than 4 years ago | (#31414220)

I'm not sure what the uproar is about...if you agree to develop apps for Apple's devices, this is the agreement you sign. If you don't like it, don't make apps for Apple products.

Well, if enough developers grow frustrated with Apple's restrictions to the point that they heed your advice, then Apple would have some problems selling iPhones/iPod Touches/iPads. I usually don't quote Steve Ballmer, but he was right when he paraded on stage many years ago about "developers, developers, developers!" One important key to the viability of a software platform is how well the developers writing software for the platform are treated. If developers have access to high-quality tools that work well and are easy to use and well-documented, and if developers are not stymied by too many burdensome restrictions, then developers will be very enthusiastic for developing for the platform. The converse is also true; platforms with bad tools and restrictive development environments usually do not garner much support unless there is another factor (such as marketshare money) that motivates developers to develop software for the platform.

Now, judging by the amount of software available for the iPod Touch/iPhone/iPad, there are a lot of developers who do not feel bothered at all by Apple's restrictions. Developers are also willing to develop for platforms that have a large marketshare, no matter how restrictive (as in the iPod Touch/iPhone/iPad) or unglamorous (I'm looking at you, x86 instruction set) it is. However, I'm willing to go out on a limb and say that the iPhone platform would have much more software available if Apple treated it like they treat Mac OS X or how Microsoft treats Windows, where anybody can come, develop any software for the platform, and have no say over how the software is distributed. The iPhone, as well as the iPad, has a lot of potential as a small, hackable device; it can go in many directions that Apple has not dreamed of. But due to Apple's restrictions, these developers will have to implement these directions on a platform that is more conducive to hacking. Perhaps if those alternative platforms start taking off due to the free, unrestricted availability of software, then those alternative platforms may gain more users, and Apple may reconsider their iPhone/iPod Touch/iPad restrictions and start opening up their platform.

But, yeah, my point and opinion is that a closed development policy can only work well for so long. Once hackers start showing off the true potential of portable devices that are not stymied by restrictions, then the iPhone and its siblings may face serious competition, competition that it might not face if the iPhone were open like Mac OS X and Windows from the start.

Re:What's the big deal? (5, Interesting)

Hizonner (38491) | more than 4 years ago | (#31414246)

It's a bid deal because the contract is monstrously one-sided, and you'd think nobody would agree to it, yet somehow it manages to fly in a big chunk of the mobile phone market.

It seems like you'd have to be nuts to invest in developing for the App Store, other than maybe for short-term, tactical purposes. Why, then, do so many people do it? Isn't that an interesting question?

Apple has repeatedly demonstrated itself to be an unreliable, capricious business partner. Apple is slow and inconsistent about approving apps. It changes the rules and yanks apps all the time... just as this agreement permits it to do. It makes errors that cost you money and doesn't compensate you. Apple has shown, repeatedly over the whole life of the App Store, that those overreaching clauses aren't just in that contract for CYA purposes. Apple fully intends to use those clauses to hose your business if it feels like it for any reason whatsoever, and the reason may have little or nothing to do with you.

Personally. I won't even buy Apple's phone because of the way they handle software. Nonetheless, many people seem to be willing to bet their livelihoods on Apple. That includes people who aren't big players, and lack the leverage to make it to Apple's advantage to forget about certain contract terms.

What's the reason for that? Even if the answer just turns out to be that they're stupid, it's valuable to look at the question. Heck, you might even get some of them to smarten up.

If the answer is not that they're stupid, but, say, that they don't have any better options, then one might want to think about why we have a market that doesn't provide any better options. Maybe there should be some changes. Maybe somebody reading this will figure out how to make them. I think there are better options, but obviously those developing for the iPhone think otherwise. Maybe they can explain why?

And, yeah, it's about rights. First of all, the whole point of any contract is that you give up some rights. Second, the law, and the underlying moral philosophy, sometimes have some nasty things to say about one-sided contracts, interference with competition, artificial limitations of liability, and the like. Not everybody agrees, but there's a perfectly respectable and intellectually consistent body of thought that says a contract like that shouldn't be legal.

Re:What's the big deal? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#31414290)

The (not particularly "online") right lost, is that you have the right to develop for any device you have in your hands, without making any agreements with anyone at all. The catch is that some devices are very difficult to develop for, without someone's SDK or, even worse, a cryptographic signature. That's how they get people to have to agree to a contract.

You have the right to develop for the iPhone, but the iPhone's design goes out of its way to make it difficult to exercise that right. Thus Apple has recreated the Nintendo of the 1980s and of course all the hatred that goes with that. Anyway, though, your conclusion is pretty much spot on: don't do it. Fuck 'em. It's a right you won't miss and they're a nearly-but-not-quite negligible piece of the mobile market.

Re:What's the big deal? (1)

BobMcD (601576) | more than 4 years ago | (#31414448)

Am I missing something?

Yes, you are. It's called 'freedom'. I wish you had some of it. You'd realize that it really is a wonderful thing, and you'd likely advocate seeing others get more of it, as I do.

I'm not sure what the uproar is about...

You're not the only one. Here's a place to get started: http://www.gnu.org/philosophy/right-to-read.html [gnu.org]

...if you agree to develop apps for Apple's devices, this is the agreement you sign. If you don't like it, don't make apps for Apple products.

We totally agree about this part.

It's the 'suffer in silence' part, that you've added - that is where we diverge.

Re:What's the big deal? (5, Informative)

Tharsman (1364603) | more than 4 years ago | (#31414494)

Agree, not sure why people cry this much, specially since Google's Android Marketplace agreement includes this:

Google may remove the Product from the Market or reclassify the Product at its sole discretion. Google reserves the right to suspend and/or bar any Developer from the Market at its sole discretion.

Sounds about right. (2, Insightful)

SOdhner (1619761) | more than 4 years ago | (#31413482)

At least the part quoted in the summary sounds like I assumed it would. They've got the high ground and there's no good reason not to have this sort of agreement. Interesting, but not even a tiny bit surprising.

But not the moral one (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#31414086)

"They've got the high ground "

To a certain extent, this is control for control's sake. Reminds me of how apple could have taken over the PC business in the 80's, but decided on higher short-term profits.

I'm sure this serves their purposes well for now, but it seems ill considered to grow the profits and expand the market for the future. It's ironic that the company known for cutting edge stuff seems to not consider the strategy of what they're doing.

I don't have an issue with it, mainly laughing at the people who will argue "...but this is for our own good...".

Maybe its time ... (4, Insightful)

phoxix (161744) | more than 4 years ago | (#31413490)

... to change Apple's icon to be borg like the way Microsoft's [fsdn.com] is ?

That 1984 commercial gets more ironic by the moment.

Re:Maybe its time ... (1)

girlintraining (1395911) | more than 4 years ago | (#31413604)

That 1984 commercial gets more ironic by the moment.

Think different [eviloverlord.com] .

Re:Maybe its time ... (1, Offtopic)

schmidt349 (690948) | more than 4 years ago | (#31413656)

Yes, it's ironic because Apple spies on its users, recording their Web searches and most of the URLs they visit via the tendrils of their ad network.

Whoops, sorry, that's Google. [antezeta.com]

But wait! Apple forces you to join their new social network system without any opt-in notice, exposing the names of everyone you've ever emailed to any idiot with a mail account from them!

Nope, that's Google again. [nytimes.com]

Don't get me wrong, I love a lot of Google's services (especially Google Books) and I use it every day like every other yutz on the Internet. But don't make the mistake of assuming that your favorite hardware/software/Web company isn't a massive corporate nightmare that would happily sell your porn-viewing habits to the Fed for a nickel if it were legal. It's not Big Brother, it's Big Business-- all about the dollar signs. There's no money in privacy.

Re:Maybe its time ... (2, Insightful)

nedlohs (1335013) | more than 4 years ago | (#31413842)

What does google doing anything have to do with Apple running a commercial in 1984?

A commercial which had nothing to say about privacy (it isn't the damn novel, it's a short ad) I might add.

Apple ran a commercial about non-conformity to the corporate machine, and now is being that conformity requiring corporate machine itself. Of course they always have been, with their interface guidelines and so on...

Can you point me to where google ran a superbowl ad about how the rest of the world was all about a lack of privacy and being spied on, and that google was different?

Re:Maybe its time ... (1, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#31414080)

The 1984 ad was widely misinterpreted. It was actually an ad espousing what Apple thought the industry should be like. They used an actor's giant head because Steve Jobs was unavailable on the day of filming. Oh, and the dirty hippy chick... yup that was Richard Stallman in drag.

Re:Maybe its time ... (1)

ae1294 (1547521) | more than 4 years ago | (#31414474)

yup that was Richard Stallman in drag.

My god... He's Right...

Re:Maybe its time ... (5, Insightful)

Sir_Lewk (967686) | more than 4 years ago | (#31414174)

Nobody was talking about google until you decided to derail the conversation. What exactly are you trying to argue? That if google is big brother, then apple cannot possibly be (there can be only one!)? That anything apple does is excusable because google does worse? I don't get it.

Re:Maybe its time ... (1)

BrokenHalo (565198) | more than 4 years ago | (#31414482)

Google doesn't force anyone to use its software. And believe it or not, it is entirely possible to live a fulfilled life with the various google analytics and adservers blocked at hosts-file level. And there's no real reason to keep their session cookies, however delicious they may be.

Re:Maybe its time ... (1)

kiehlster (844523) | more than 4 years ago | (#31413702)

But has Apple stooped to assimilating other people's technology? Consider this quote:

We are the Borg. Lower your shields and surrender your ships. We will add your biological and technological distinctiveness to our own. Your culture will adapt to service us. Resistance is futile. - The Borg, "Star Trek: First Contact" (1996)

I guess, if you consider the app store as a method of assimilating other people's technology, then it would make some sense.

Re:Maybe its time ... (3, Informative)

dkf (304284) | more than 4 years ago | (#31413932)

But has Apple stooped to assimilating other people's technology?

Wasn't there a lot of discussion recently when Nokia accused Apple of using patented technology without paying a fair price?

Re:Maybe its time ... (1)

kiehlster (844523) | more than 4 years ago | (#31414236)

Ah, good point. I have heard that Apple's been stepping on peoples patents lately.

So do we go with an Apple logo with a borg-like worm running through it, or a Steve Jobs mug like we have of Bill Gates? I would go with the former myself.

Um, No (2, Funny)

Greyfox (87712) | more than 4 years ago | (#31413772)

Apple is nothing like the Borg. For one thing, if Apple was the Borg, you'd want them to come in and take you over. The Borg cube would be this magical place with fairys and unicorns that crap clean user interfaces that never get infected with viruses!

No, Apple is more like... like a giant solid gold wang! Oh sure it's shiny and all golden but in the end it's still a wang. And, like any wang, it has serious growth potential! [penny-arcade.com]

Re:Um, No (3, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#31414018)

If Apple was the Borg the cube ship would be white and shiny, but lack USB ports.

Re:Maybe its time ... (1)

axl917 (1542205) | more than 4 years ago | (#31413878)

I have noted the same thing as well. Apple has gazed too long into the abyss.

No, it's not time for that (1)

Sloppy (14984) | more than 4 years ago | (#31414348)

Microsoft are the Borg because they bought a lot of companies because they couldn't develop products themselves. "Your technology will be assimilated." Who did Apple buy the iPhone from?

I Love my iPhone But (2, Interesting)

Fantom42 (174630) | more than 4 years ago | (#31413516)

I don't like the way this reads. Apple does need to exert some control over their device in order to preserve their branding, but IMHO some of the draconian shit in here goes way to far.

Re:I Love my iPhone But (1)

Ironhandx (1762146) | more than 4 years ago | (#31413972)

Honestly, its Apple. Is anyone really surprised?

The reason a lot of people chose PCs over Macs originally was because MICROSOFT was more open and friendly. That right there should be enough warning for anyone.

Re:I Love my iPhone But (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#31414022)

How could you expect anything different from Apple? Do you read stories about stuff getting removed from the app store and think that it must be a mistake every time? Perhaps you should research shit you buy instead of just getting the shiniest thing.

Re:I Love my iPhone But (1)

macs4all (973270) | more than 4 years ago | (#31414172)

I don't like the way this reads. Apple does need to exert some control over their device in order to preserve their branding, but IMHO some of the draconian shit in here goes way to far.

Do you even READ the gazillion EULAs you "sign" every year?

This is simply lawyer-speak. Pay it no mind.

If the iPhone dev. agreement was too draconian, do you really think there would be well over 100k apps in the App Store? Is every developer stupid (but you)?

Nothing to see here. Move along.

DRACON HERE, I SAY, WELL DONE, APPLE !! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#31413542)

Steve, I like your style !!

Blow apple the fuck away (0, Troll)

Peter Nikolic (1093513) | more than 4 years ago | (#31413564)

As some who absolutely hates everything apple and macintoy based they day they are blown off the face of the planet can't come soon enough they are as bad if not worse than M$ Corp when it comes to questionable patents . Tis to be hoped they try it on with someone with some nounce and get fried to bits and wind up out of existence for good and that freakin stupid scabby thing they call a phone the iphone well lets hope someone finds a way to completely cripple them all they are a scruge on the phone system

   

Re:Blow apple the fuck away (1)

Goaway (82658) | more than 4 years ago | (#31413952)

Here, have a cookie.

Hey (-1, Flamebait)

Pojut (1027544) | more than 4 years ago | (#31413636)

Hey Apple hipsters...are you reading this?

Gem? (5, Insightful)

whisper_jeff (680366) | more than 4 years ago | (#31413644)

There's also this gem: 'You will not, through use of the Apple Software, services or otherwise create any Application or other program that would disable, hack, or otherwise interfere with the Security Solution, or any security, digital signing, digital rights management, verification or authentication mechanisms implemented in or by the iPhone operating system software, iPod Touch operating system software, this Apple Software, any services or other Apple software or technology, or enable others to do so.'

Ok, could you please explain to me how that's a "gem". I'd have thought that it would be obvious that Apple would not approve an app that circumvents DRM. Yes, I know, it's your device and you should be able to do what you want with it. Yes, I know that DRM is evil and should be circumvented (and destroyed). Yes, I know all of that but how would anyone in their right mind think that Apple would actually support circumventing DRM, especially their own?

Sorry, I know it's now all cool and whatnot to hate on Apple for everything and anything but I totally do not see anything worth getting riled up about here. If you don't like their products, don't buy them. If you don't like their developer's agreement, don't develop for them. On the list of "Big Bad Evil Companies", Apple is pretty damn far down the list and, really, if you're going to view this "gem" as a reason to view them as evil then you're just trying to find any and every excuse to hate on them.

Non-issue. Boring.

Re:Gem? (1)

Aladrin (926209) | more than 4 years ago | (#31413682)

I was thinking the same thing. It doesn't even need to be there... It's the law!

Re:Gem? (1)

timeOday (582209) | more than 4 years ago | (#31414008)

It doesn't even need to be there... It's the law!

Not so! The DMCA was sold to Congress with a number of exemptions [wikipedia.org] which "are granted when it is shown that access-control technology has had a substantial adverse effect on the ability of people to make non-infringing uses of copyrighted works" (to quote wikipedia). They're there for a reason. But to Apple, "fair use" means using Apple products in the precise manner dictated by Apple.

Re:Gem? (1, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#31413946)

The thing is, it also says "or enable others to do so.". That basically means that you aren't allowed any vulnerabilities at all which is infeasible (and hard to prove).

Re:Gem? (1, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#31413970)

The slashdot kids (often kids in their 30s) seem to think Apple is bad because it detracts from this holy Linux-on-the-Desktop and Linux-on-the-phone that is the 'One true way' or whatever.

Despite the fact that Linux isn't ready for the desktop and won't be anytime soon because coders aren't designers. Apple and Microsoft employee designers.

And Linux on the phone? The Android experience feels so vastly inferior to an iPhone I dunno what to say. Its cluttered, its less responsive, its just as expensive. Get a clue and become productive people, aka not wannabe sysadmins.

Re:Gem? (1)

jellomizer (103300) | more than 4 years ago | (#31413986)

I would agree. Out of all of the agreement in the list this seems like the most reasonable... And rather the main selling point of the App Store. The fact that you can download apps that will not break your iPhone, unlike PC and Even Macs or Linux you can get software once installs breaks your computer and makes it unusable. DRM is a security feature of the system. But it is protecting the software from you vs. the other way around, and we all heard the arguments for and against DRM... But the fact is Apple and its publishers decided to use it. If Apple made it too easy to break its DRM its publishers will not stay with that platform.

Re:Gem? (1)

asdfghjklqwertyuiop (649296) | more than 4 years ago | (#31414426)

you can get software once installs breaks your computer and makes it unusable. DRM is a security feature of the system.

No. DRM has nothing to do with that. The purpose of DRM is to remove some amount of your control over your own computer and give it to someone else. It has nothing to do with keeping hostile code under your control. It is kind of the opposite of that.

Re:Gem? (3, Insightful)

Aceticon (140883) | more than 4 years ago | (#31414228)

Let me highlight the significant bits for you:

'You will not, through use of the Apple Software, services or otherwise create any Application or other program that would disable, hack, or otherwise interfere with the Security Solution, or any security, digital signing, digital rights management, verification or authentication mechanisms implemented in or by the iPhone operating system software, iPod Touch operating system software, this Apple Software, any services or other Apple software or technology, or enable others to do so.'

The "otherwise" basically means "in any way whatsoever" (i.e. thus also when not using Apple hardware, software or documentation).

The "in or by" means that it doesn't mater if the software does not at all target Apple products in any way: if the mechanism is used in or by the Apple software or services you can't do it.

The "any services or other Apple software or technology" means anything that Apple uses (even if it's as simple as Basic HTTP Authentication in an obscure Apple website).

The "or enable others to do so" means any tool that might help others do so. In my example above (Basic HTTP Authentication in an obscure Apple website) this means Packet Sniffers, HTTP Proxies (unless they have no logs) and in fact any means of intercepting an HTTP Request/Response. In fact (and given that Basic HTTP Authentication is easy to break) it could potentially be interpreted to cover an utility application that would allow you to more easilly read the RFC for HTTP 1.0 or a Base64 decoder (since that's the way the username:password are encoded in Basic HTTP Authentication).

Here's a plausible scenario:
- Security researcher accepts this. He/she just agreed to never create any software that would show the weakness in a mechanism that was also implemented or used in any Apple product or service (even if not done by Apple) now and forever. This even if said research and said software was otherwise completely unrelated to Apple software/hardware and was not even done using knowledge aquired in any way from the Apple docs.

"you can't disclose the agreement itself" (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#31413668)

Okay, I get the whole "you will blow Steve Jobs whenever he feels like it" mentality (this IS Apple after all), but I don't get the notion that they have legal authority to restrict the actual agreement. Why hide it, other than the terms itself might not be palatable, in which case maybe the agreement sucks to begin with. That, on top of all the other crap, should be a firm indicator that doing business with Apple is just asking for potential trouble.

Big Fat Hairy Deal (5, Insightful)

turb (5673) | more than 4 years ago | (#31413696)

If you were to take the Apple agreement and compare it to many a confidentiality agreement or similar agreements when two companies are working together you'd find the language etc etc etc are pretty much the same.

But alas that kind of reality check doesn't make good inflammatory "news" nor get the slashdot crowd up in arms to advance someone else's agenda.

Re:Big Fat Hairy Deal (1)

sammyF70 (1154563) | more than 4 years ago | (#31414138)

I've got Karma to burn and I actually care about what I'm going to write for obvious reasons, so there we go : I wonder why my story [cosmic-bandito.com] didn't make it, but this does. Slashdot subsidized much my Google?

Will NASA's app get killed? (4, Interesting)

srussia (884021) | more than 4 years ago | (#31413744)

They are in violation of the agreement after all for disclosing it.

No offense, but RTFA (1)

axl917 (1542205) | more than 4 years ago | (#31413926)

As a government entity, NASA's transactions are subject to FOIA requests, which is how the EFF obtained it.

Re:No offense, but RTFA (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#31413966)

And if you RTFA yourself, you would realize that the disclosure violates the agreement itself.

Re:No offense, but RTFA (1)

SharpFang (651121) | more than 4 years ago | (#31414272)

Yep... that essentially means neither NASA nor any governmental institution is in position to develop ANY iPhone apps. They are in a lose-lose situation.

OTOH, I wonder, if I could apply for Apple Developer license, then decline its terms, and since I'm not bound by its terms, publish it. They might still try to sue me for copyright violation but I can imagine several "fair use" scenarios where I would be legal to reveal it.

Re:No offense, but RTFA (3, Informative)

axl917 (1542205) | more than 4 years ago | (#31414286)

You are completely missing the point; NASA was compelled to surrender the information by the rule of law, it did not do so willingly. They cannot be held liable for the disclosure.

Re:No offense, but RTFA (3, Insightful)

pavon (30274) | more than 4 years ago | (#31414422)

FOIA requests for proprietary third-party information can be denied under exemption 4 (5 U.S.C. 552 b 4) . For example, just because Microsoft chooses to allow some government agencies to inspect their code, does not mean that the public is entitled to it.

Re:Will NASA's app get killed? (2, Interesting)

vlm (69642) | more than 4 years ago | (#31413938)

They are in violation of the agreement after all for disclosing it.

Too many people like NASA, that would be bad PR.

However, I expect thats the last app from the government that will ever be approved. Now those apps can still be developed and operated by 3rd parties upon contract by the govt, but we'll probably never see an "official census dept historical genealogy app", which is too bad.

That's it? (4, Insightful)

AgingYoungRebel (805563) | more than 4 years ago | (#31413788)

Gee if this is the work of the evil empire the world is safe.

Same old Apple (2, Interesting)

Improv (2467) | more than 4 years ago | (#31413848)

I think this is part of Apple's corporate culture - they never signed on to the OS as an "open(ish) platform" thing that PC users (and unix geeks to an even greater extent) came to expect. I don't know what we can do but not buy their products - it's a pity because I'd generally like to suggest that non-tech people go with OSX (and tech folk should go with Linux or OpenBSD), but I don't like supporting companies that do this kind of thing.

So now we are all going to get iKeys? (1)

paulsnx2 (453081) | more than 4 years ago | (#31413936)

I don't care what Apple does because I don't develop for them. I can ignore IPhones and IPads and ITunes and other Apple products. But slowly and surely Apple is gaining ground by rapidly out running development in some (I have to admit) cool applications.

We have to free up the infrastructure. Nothing about the IPhone required Apple to invent it other than the fact that it took Apple/Jobs to stand up to the wireless operators and deliver a platform outside *their* control. It took Apple/Jobs to stand up to the RIAA and deliver legitimate digital music over the Internet.

So what is Apple good at? They are good at forcing their way through various Corporate and Social barriers because they have the ego to do so. But many customers do not recognize that Apple does this while at the same time erecting barriers for others to prevent them from following their path. Apple erects barriers to prevent others from leveraging their products.

So why do I say "ego" to do this? Because they don't respect any other corporate entity's efforts to protect their turf (a good thing, I think), but haven't any problem doing a far better and more comprehensive job of protecting their own (good in the short term for customers, bad in the long term).

Hurray to Apple for breaking barriers. Boo to Apple for building replacements that might be far more difficult to break down.

All is great as long as Apple is innovating. But all innovative companies become stagnate over time. And I fear at some point Apple will no longer be the rising star of technology, but just another corporate boat anchor.

Another nail in their coffin (for me). (4, Insightful)

isolationism (782170) | more than 4 years ago | (#31414006)

I know most users won't give up their iPhone/iTouch over their dead bodies -- and I've already invested in an iTouch, and I don't want to throw it away either while it still works.

But I'm done giving money to Apple for their mobile devices. I just got screwed buying an unlicenced cable because I didn't think charging CAD $55 was a reasonable price for a $3 output cable; turns out you either pay the piper or live without, because Apple (and their licencees) all chip their accessories now and the iPhone won't work without detecting one. The only exception seems to be charging, which I only discovered after spending another $50 or so to buy an AC-USB plug and another cable.

I am equally sick of forking out money every time I sneeze. Maybe it's unreasonable of me, but I somehow feel like I shouldn't be paying $10 for an ssh client, and that I shouldn't have to essentially "break the law" to use the underlying operating system features. I totally understand that to even develop for this thing costs you >$100/year; maybe I've been using Linux for too long.

I very much hate trying to interoperate with the device using Linux (it doesn't; not even a little bit; yes I've tried Wine and all the other native apps; it's not supported). Total waste of time. It's a good thing I have a token mac mini as an HTPC or it would be a total wash.

I recently needed to piggyback files from one windows computer to another and didn't have a USB key handy. But here was my iTouch. Done deal, right? This should be easy. Wrong. I couldn't put a zip file on it when mounted via USB, and I couldn't download the file directly from the web using Safari either. I ended up doing the job with a portable audio recorder, because yes -- even though this device has no reason to support anything but audio and audio metadata files, it didn't actively gun down any attempts to do otherwise.

Mobile devices seem to boil down to the same dilemma as on the desktop; you can either use Linux and have the freedom and choice -- which, for now, typically means either a lot less choice or a lot more effort to get things up and running like the state of affairs a decade or more ago; or you can grab your ankles, hand over your credit card and enjoy an overall smoother experience so long as you keep feeding proverbial quarters into the machine.

I've been holding out hope that the Nokia N900 comes to Canada in an 850MHz flavour but it looks like I'll be waiting in vain; time to decide whether to suck it up and deal with only EDGE connectivity or consider going to a different flavour of evil/greed from Apple.

Re:Another nail in their coffin (for me). (1)

Stumbles (602007) | more than 4 years ago | (#31414134)

Welcome to the world of proprietary hardware and software. There is much to be said for the phrase: broken by design.

Re:Another nail in their coffin (for me). (1)

jedidiah (1196) | more than 4 years ago | (#31414334)

> I am equally sick of forking out money every time I sneeze. Maybe it's unreasonable of me, but
> I somehow feel like I shouldn't be paying $10 for an ssh client, and that I shouldn't have

Yes. I too find the whole "nickel and dime you to death" approach with Mac software to be terribly annoying.

> to essentially "break the law" to use the underlying operating system features. I totally understand
> that to even develop for this thing costs you >$100/year; maybe I've been using Linux for too long.
> I very much hate trying to interoperate with the device using Linux (it doesn't; not even a little bit;
> yes I've tried Wine and all the other native apps; it's not supported). Total waste of time. It's a good

You can also use Windows inside of a VM. The non-OSE version of VirtualBox will allow you to access
USB devices inside the VM. So you can run iTunes and load your phone with it. It doesn't seem to be
any slower than an actual mini.

> thing I have a token mac mini as an HTPC or it would be a total wash.

I still prefer a VM to a seperate machine for this sort of thing.

Well, I suppose that settles it... (1, Insightful)

joedoc (441972) | more than 4 years ago | (#31414098)

Apple is now Microsoft.

Increased engine efficiency helps hybrids too (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#31414102)

I hate when an article talks about some newfangled engine tech and says it's more efficient than hybrids. A perfect hybrid is going to be more efficient per mile than a perfect gas engine. Period.

Why? lots of reasons.
Regenerative breaking is a big one.
You can use a sterling engine or a turbine or diesel instead of a 4 stroke gasoline engine.
You can remove the transmission entirely and just have the engine connected to a generator, like the Volt is going to do.

And finally, any increase of efficiency you wring out of a gas engine can also be used in the gas engine of a hybrid.

(for naysayers, I'll admit that current batteries are heavy)

I'm surprised they found it so difficult to get... (2, Insightful)

Roogna (9643) | more than 4 years ago | (#31414148)

After all, you can also just go over and click through the signup to become a developer, and.. big shock here, you're presented with the agreement.

And as others have said, if you don't like it, then you just don't agree to it. You can -still- develop for jailbroken phones without agreeing to this contract. What you can't do is get into the App Store. Which Apple, like any business is welcome to decide what products they would, or would not like to carry.

What the EFF needs to spend their time doing instead of this stupid waste of time, is be getting whoever needs to (FCC I guess, probably Congress themselves) to pass a rule or law requiring "smartphones" to be considered what they are, small computers connected to the celular data network, and that because they are -our- property we -must- be allowed to install whatever we desire on them. The idea that any company can decide how their product is used -after- it's been sold is the issue.
Instead they're wasting taxpayer dollars with FOIA requests to get license agreements that are posted on Apple's bloody website.

The Point (1)

e2d2 (115622) | more than 4 years ago | (#31414188)

Everyone always asks what's the point what's the point. Here's the point in a nut shell:

Don't develop applications for apple unless you want to sell out to a company that will fuck you over if they even get a whiff of competition, see a potential revenue stream in the same space, or simply don't like you. There will be no recourse if they fuck you. So if you want to make money with complete disregard for software freedom and the future of the industry as a whole then so be it. But don't pretend for a second there are no repercussions to such choices.

Apple will lose to others eventually unless they change their ways. Do you know why? Steve Ballmer knows. He did a 2 minute rant on it once. Something about developers..

YUO FAqIL IT? (-1, Redundant)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#31414222)

your own towel in Apple too. No, already aware, *BSD Were compounded Give other people user. 'Now that all know we want. Lube is wiped off thaT support states that there *BSD but FreeBSD OS I do, because First, You have to USENET POSTS. that the project I read the latest long term survival to predict *BSD's not going home Become an unwanted DOG THAT IT IS. IT core team. They hand...don't a BSD box (a PIII About a project bring your own to place a paper Mistake of electing OpenBSD, as the your own towel in bleak future. In disturbing. If you when done playing world-spanning minutes now while consider that right

Yawn (1)

BlueBoxSW.com (745855) | more than 4 years ago | (#31414248)

I'm seeing nothing that any other company wouldn't do to protect their intellectual rights.

Apple is not an open source company.

ipod cracked yet? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#31414280)

Has the ipod 32GB/64GB version (not the nano or whatever other versions exist) been cracked so that it can run Linux (and possibly use android apps)? I received the 32GB version as a gift and it's sitting in a drawer because I don't use apple products, run Linux, and couldn't get the ipod working when I attempted to "register" it by using the ipod software running on Windows 7 RC as a client in virtualbox. I'd much prefer to use it with Linux especially if I could use the android apps that are available. I received it about six months ago, and when I checked then, it really didn't seem possible to run Linux on it at that time, except for an ubuntu solution, who's steps weren't complete so it looked like the ubuntu solution wasn't complete at that time and therefore didn't work.

Is there interest in cracking an ipod to run Linux and/or Android, especially if the android apps can possibly be used now, or has the Linux community thrown in the towel on ipods and moved on to Android/Google phones? Thanks.

Nintendo? (5, Insightful)

Akido37 (1473009) | more than 4 years ago | (#31414306)

Why all the Apple hate, but not Nintendo? Nintendo's policies are far more restrictive, from what I've read, and the developer kit is expensive and difficult to impossible to get for newbies.

Anti-Fanboi's Attack! (1)

Lifyre (960576) | more than 4 years ago | (#31414322)

I'm not an Apple fan and have never owned an Apple product, I prefer my Kool-Aid in different flavors.

But honestly this seems to be a pretty standard agreement, there is nothing horribly sneaky or underhanded going on. The only thing I have an issue with is that Apple has tried to keep it from being public knowledge, which is their ultra-controlling usual self but nothing to get riled up over.

Perspective people...

Honestly I think Apple sucks but (1)

NotSoHeavyD3 (1400425) | more than 4 years ago | (#31414438)

really isn't this how it is for any closed platform? I mean I'd expect the agreement for any Microsoft, Nintendo, Sega, or Sony platform is pretty similar. I'd honestly be surprised if restrictions on say the XBox or PS3 were significantly different.

What if (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#31414518)

What if a company that used their monopoly to force all hardware manufacturers to ship their hardware with that company's software? There is an interesting suspension of legal reckoning in the arguments that go "If you don't like it, don't develop for the iphone" -- the suspension of logic is pretty basic if you understand history and the law: THESE AREN'T FEUDAL TIMES, WE LIVE UNDER THE RULE OF LAW.

If you don't know what the rule of law is, you should.

The scenario above did happen -- and Microsoft was prosecuted for monopolistic practices.

You might be tempted to think that Apple can just make up ANY rules it wants and apply them unilaterally. The truth is -- they can try -- but Apple is not above the law. "A contract that does not obey the will of the people cannot be recognized by a court of law."

What if this contract said that Apple has the right to take your first born child if you submit an app that violates any rules? What if the contract said Apple could take your first born child just for submitting an app at all? Well, slavery is illegal -- as is kidnapping -- and this contract would be invalid because it violates the will of the people.

Obviously my extreme example is to prove a point: No, we don't just have to "accept" whatever Apple decrees -- we can make laws to regulate and define the industry.

Once a upon a time in America you could produce milk without a license. Diseases spread. Then came laws that formed the Food & Drug Administration, and said you can't make milk unless you pasteurize it.

Call me a big-government lefty (go ahead), but if left unregulated green will always try to screw over the little guy. Read some history.

I don't fault Apple for a single provision in the contract -- I'm a member of the developer program myself and I've read the whole thing. In fact, by writing this response right here I'm breaking the rules aren't I? Because I'm not supposed to make public statements about the contract. But I don't believe that provision (ban on public statements) is legal -- it violates the concept of freedom of speech -- therefore I'm going to choose to hold the law of the land in higher esteem than Apple itself.

Apple can and should protect its interests. But the contract should also be public -- and thankfully we have FOIA and a NASA app that has made it so. Apple is not above the law nor is it above public scrutiny. When they come for my first born child, I ain't turning him over -- no matter what the contract says.

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