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Windows 7 Phone Gets Jailbreak Tool

CmdrTaco posted more than 3 years ago | from the happens-to-all-of-us-eventually dept.

Windows 159

An anonymous reader writes "Developers have released a 'jailbreak' tool for Microsoft's Windows Phone 7, allowing the handsets to run any application, not just those approved for distribution through Microsoft's Marketplace. Although reminiscent of jailbreak tools for the iPhone, this tool, called ChevronWP7, addresses a feature missing in Microsoft's Windows Phone 7. It allows corporations to develop proprietary applications and install them on users' handsets without the need to first place the application on Marketplace, as is currently required by Microsoft."

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159 comments

If a tree falls on an iphone in the forest..... (0, Offtopic)

scosco62 (864264) | more than 3 years ago | (#34390018)

Frankly, does this shock anyone? And should anyone care? I'm thinking the wolfboy story (http://www.nypost.com/p/news/international/item_GwCmaMaFVhy5Shwomb1kZJ) might be more relevant...and interesting.......

Re:If a tree falls on an iphone in the forest..... (3, Funny)

windcask (1795642) | more than 3 years ago | (#34390056)

Ah, the obligatory "this isn't news" first post. I've come to love you so...

Re:If a tree falls on an iphone in the forest..... (1)

camperslo (704715) | more than 3 years ago | (#34390664)

What's needed is a rootkit for installing Android.

That would be a great escape for someone who gets one of these phones as a gift.

Re:If a tree falls on an iphone in the forest..... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#34391054)

Methinks that anyone who would root a Windows phone to install Android would not get one of those as a gift. People are scared to give technology to tech people. They're usually sure they'll mess up.

Misfeature (1)

girlintraining (1395911) | more than 3 years ago | (#34390042)

It allows corporations to develop proprietary applications and install them on users' handsets

Any chance the jailbreak comes with the option to disable this functionality?

Re:Misfeature (1)

recoiledsnake (879048) | more than 3 years ago | (#34390206)

It allows corporations to develop proprietary applications and install them on users' handsets

Any chance the jailbreak comes with the option to disable this functionality?

Corporations are not going to be able to use this tool to install applications on general users' handsets without permission.

That line should read 'employees' handsets' not 'user's handsets'. That's a feature.

Re:Misfeature (1)

gstoddart (321705) | more than 3 years ago | (#34390210)

"It allows corporations to develop proprietary applications and install them on users' handsets"

Any chance the jailbreak comes with the option to disable this functionality?

If it's their phone, why are you trying to stop it? If it's your phone, why are you hooking it up to your company's servers?

I read this as more of an in-house corporate thing, as opposed to carriers. Though, I guess it's stupid of me to assume the carriers won't ultimately muck up your phone with crap they want to install (which I'm sure will jack up your data usage to make them more money) -- they always do.

Re:Misfeature (2, Insightful)

Ephemeriis (315124) | more than 3 years ago | (#34390624)

It allows corporations to develop proprietary applications and install them on users' handsets without the need to first place the application on Marketplace, as is currently required by Microsoft.

Any chance the jailbreak comes with the option to disable this functionality?

Why?

Isn't the whole point of jailbreaking a phone like this so that you can run your own code on it? So that you're not tied to the marketplace?

Why would you go to the trouble of jailbreaking a phone if you didn't want to run code on it that was not marketplace-approved?

If you don't want that feature, don't jailbreak your phone.

Re:Misfeature (1)

Microlith (54737) | more than 3 years ago | (#34391130)

I think he means the option to disable the ability for corporations to push applications to users handsets. I also think he is mistaken in the purpose and functionality of the feature.

Unofficial hack in a corporation?! (1, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#34390060)

What corporation would possibly use this? It has bad idea written all over it. If you base your business on being able to hack the phone then you're going to be SOL if Microsoft locks it down again.

As a business your best bet is to use a phone that meets your requirements and is officially supported by the phone manufacture without having to resort to hacks.

Re:Unofficial hack in a corporation?! (1)

shadowrat (1069614) | more than 3 years ago | (#34390906)

My thoughts exactly. I've been doing enterprise app development for IOS. the topic of jailbreaking comes up frequently. it's always quickly dismissed. The idea of a corporation of any size basing operations or strategy around unsupported hardware is pretty silly. What i find really bizzare is that windows phone 7 had no mechanism for enterprise deployment of apps. All along i thought their marketing of amazing xbox live integration was going to rub enterprise customers the wrong way.

Re:Unofficial hack in a corporation?! (1)

Bert64 (520050) | more than 3 years ago | (#34391142)

It's simply targeted at end users, just like the iPhone primarily is...
Corporate users are extremely conservative and have limited feature requirements... It's not a terribly good market because most companies will buy handsets which are a few years old or relatively lowend.

Re:Unofficial hack in a corporation?! (1)

shadowrat (1069614) | more than 3 years ago | (#34392128)

My evidence is largely anecdotal, but the enterprise market seems to be huge. I make marketing apps for a large international brewing company. They have thousands of devices in the field. Their staff take these devices to events and whatnot and use all this custom software. We have other clients coming in constantly telling us how their sales force has adopted ipads, but they want something custom and branded to really wow people.

They love the devices so much that we are now making enterprise apps for their sales and distribution forces. Granted, the other thing that apple has managed to do that it's competitors are failing to do is produce devices that do not come with expensive plans. Most of the enterprise staff that we are supporting are using ipods and ipads. I think there's been a huge uptake in these devices for use by sales and marketing forces as an alternative to laptops and tablets. In fact, the programs i am responsible for used to be based around windows tablets.

all of my clients are sensitive to the fact that iOS is NOT the easiest platform in the world to develop for. Many that i have talked to are sort of waiting with baited breath for something like an iPad from MS because they realize that form factor / experience coupled with an easy development platform would be ideal.

oh well, i guess in my small world, there are only millions of potential customers in sales and marketing forces, whereas in the consumer space there are billions. i guess i understand that. It still seems to me that MS is competing with the Apple and Google of 4 years ago rather than today.

some corporation may want to unlock for overseas u (1)

Joe The Dragon (967727) | more than 3 years ago | (#34391536)

some corporation may want to unlock even if it's just for overseas use. As getting a sim over can be $1000's + less if you need to use data.

Re:some corporation may want to unlock for oversea (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#34392450)

This is not a carrier unlock, "jailbreak" or anything of the sort, it installs a new root certificate to allow apps not signed by the official store to be installed. That's all it does. It doesn't let you use a locked phone on another carriers sim card.

Not a jailbreak (2, Informative)

The MAZZTer (911996) | more than 3 years ago | (#34390062)

According to this guy [withinwindows.com] it uses the same APIs as the Windows phone developer tools do.

It's an API! (3, Insightful)

eldavojohn (898314) | more than 3 years ago | (#34390178)

According to this guy [withinwindows.com] it uses the same APIs as the Windows phone developer tools do.

Yep this is just a trick. Microsoft has released a veiled "Jailbreak" and by the time you're done coding your application for your Jailbroke Windows 7 Phone, you'll realize that you just coded a WinCE application for a mobile phone! Even worse, you purchased one thinking you could jailbreak it!

Sincerely,

Admiral Ackbar

Re:It's an API! (2, Interesting)

mlts (1038732) | more than 3 years ago | (#34390508)

Windows CE isn't a bad OS. I wished MS could have taken a different tack, but I sort of understand how they are going with WP7:

1: Release as closed as possible.
2: Add functionality.

The reason for this is that if they continued with the "open" platform of WM6.5, eventually there would be malware on the platform and the whole ecosystem would be known for being "insecure" just as users bash Windows on their PC for being "insecure" (when it is their own fault for installing pr0nviewerxxx.exe, or they get nailed through a Web browser or add-on, something the OS can't really protect against [1].)

I predict that eventually MS is going to allow signed executables onto their devices, as well as a way for the enterprise to slap a root cert onto devices so they can have in-house apps and easily distribute/update them via OTA. However, I am sure MS wants to go slowly at this and watch iOS and Android's mistakes so they don't get stung by rogue apps, or Web browsers that allow a phone to be compromised by merely hitting a site.

[1]: Of course, no OS is completely secure, but comparing oranges to oranges, Windows is on par for the course, supporting ASLR, DEP, and other security features. The battle for the desktop is being fought at the browser, add-on, and Trojan executable points these days.

Re:It's an API! (3, Insightful)

Microlith (54737) | more than 3 years ago | (#34390754)

if they continued with the "open" platform of WM6.5, eventually there would be malware on the platform and the whole ecosystem would be known for being "insecure" just as users bash Windows on their PC for being "insecure"

Really? All they'd have to do is make it a user optional switch with respect to non-store software and flip it to off by default, and make the store prominent. They'd probably never have an issue. Forcibly locking the system down with no opt-out doesn't help security at all.

Like Apple, this is all about total control over the end user and using that control to route them through profit centers (and I don't believe for a moment that these stores will not be profitable, otherwise what's the point.)

Re:It's an API! (1)

nschubach (922175) | more than 3 years ago | (#34390522)

I'm waiting for the story about how Microsoft meant their phone to be open and how they support the movement.

Re:It's an API! (1)

AndrewNeo (979708) | more than 3 years ago | (#34391514)

Microsoft's response (some time last week, this isn't 'new') was basically, "you get the best experience if you stay with the way the handset designers give it to you". As in, they're not saying yes or no, just the ambiguous we'd just rather you didn't.

Re:Not a jailbreak (1)

chemicaldave (1776600) | more than 3 years ago | (#34390476)

According to this guy [withinwindows.com] it uses the same APIs as the Windows phone developer tools do.

It doesn't matter what you call it if you can circumvent the "app store" jail and load applications directly.

Re:Not a jailbreak (2, Insightful)

tdyer (1399659) | more than 3 years ago | (#34390698)

And Since Raphael (co)wrote the tool in question its a good idea to listen to him. Also not a jailbreak. Merely allows sideloading of apps. Doesn't do SIM unlocks or anything else. And microsoft does allow Corporations to side load app's. if you know who to ask...

Re:Not a jailbreak (1)

JackieBrown (987087) | more than 3 years ago | (#34391108)

And microsoft does allow Corporations to side load app's. if you know who to ask...

You mean Jeff @ ext 54342? Yeah, he's great!

Re:Not a jailbreak (1)

phantomfive (622387) | more than 3 years ago | (#34391370)

Who do you ask? I haven't heard of any company getting special permissions except Adobe (because Microsoft really wants Flash) and the carriers/phone manufacturers (for obvious reasons). Do you know of any company that has gotten permission from MS to sideload apps, or is this just a rumor you heard?

Huh (1)

metrix007 (200091) | more than 3 years ago | (#34390064)

I had no idea MS were doing the same thing as Apple, exercising completely control over what applications you have permission to install on a device you purchased. Why would they copy Apple in this area?

Re:Huh (0)

windcask (1795642) | more than 3 years ago | (#34390146)

Why would they copy Apple in this area?

They did it before them, sure, but they were hardly the first. Off the top of my head, I seem to remember Nintendo doing the same thing with the NES/Famicom in the late 1980s (that is, only allowing licensed titles to be used in their system, thereby receiving access through their special lockout chip).

Re:Huh (1)

NJRoadfan (1254248) | more than 3 years ago | (#34390234)

Nintendo was much more strict. They limited developers to 5 releases a year (subject to content approval, although alot of crap got released anyway), plus they manufactured all the game carts. Konami got around this by creating Ultra Games and doubled the limit.

Re:Huh (2, Interesting)

windcask (1795642) | more than 3 years ago | (#34390370)

plus they manufactured all the game carts

This I did not know, but it makes sense. That way they could have control over who has access to their technology; it's actually kind of brilliant. It also explains why the unlicensed games were all those funky colors...

Re:Huh (1)

mehrotra.akash (1539473) | more than 3 years ago | (#34390246)

IMO they are just trying to copy iPhone 1's success(forgetting that was a few years back) for more explaination: http://slashdot.org/comments.pl?sid=1864010&cid=34195594 [slashdot.org]

Re:Huh (5, Insightful)

Missing.Matter (1845576) | more than 3 years ago | (#34390742)

Original iPhone lacked 3G, MMS, video recording, third party apps of any kind, and of course an app store. To top it off, it cost $500-$600, came on one carrier, and a single form factor for all. This, on top of multitasking and copy/paste. If the only two things you can pick out are cp/multitasking, you're just grasping at straws to find shortcomings of the platform.

The fact is, these shortcomings of the iPhone were vehemently defended by Apple aficionados. Before June 21, 2010, the official line from Apple users was "Who needs multitasking on a phone?" Now it's some sort of benchmark for the success/failure of a platform, despite the fact that the iPhone earned most of its respect before iOS 4.0.

I understand that today, iPhone does have multitasking/c&p, and I agree it's a shortcoming of the WP7 platform, but I don't think it's a deal killer as there are other reasons to want one of the phones (xbox integration, wireless sync, zunepass, and office integration are my major interests in the platform), and they're sure to be introduced in future updates.

Re:Huh (1)

nine-times (778537) | more than 3 years ago | (#34391690)

I still say, "Who needs multitasking on a phone?" There are a few set things that I'd like to be able to run in the background, but I don't need real multitasking. I don't need to be able to edit word documents while watching a Netflix movie. I don't need the phone to be displaying an ebook in the background while I'm using the display to display web pages. All that stuff just wastes RAM and CPU cycles. Everyone recognizes this.

In truth, Microsoft is copying Apple here in a very particular way: they're trying to create a limited device with which only does a few things but does those things well, rather than creating a feature-rich hunk of junk. It's probably a smart move, too. Get the basics working well, then add bells and whistles with software updates. There's no sin in copying someone else, only in copying someone else poorly.

Re:Huh (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#34392290)

I don't need the phone to be displaying an ebook in the background while I'm using the display to display web pages.

So, you don't see the benefit of being able to use the web to research a particular passage or point brought up in an ebook you are currently reading? On my Android handset, I do this all the time.

Re:Huh (1)

Missing.Matter (1845576) | more than 3 years ago | (#34392456)

Actually, iOS had this functionality before 4.0. On my iPad (pre 4.2), iBooks saved my page location if I left to go into safari. The best thing 4.2 actually added was a quick app switcher (double home button click). Otherwise it's not all that different from before unless your app takes advantage of special functionality (like Pandora).

Re:Huh (1)

Missing.Matter (1845576) | more than 3 years ago | (#34392312)

I don't need to be able to edit word documents while watching a Netflix movie.

The funny thing is, iPhone (or at least iPad, because that's my only experience with iOS 4) still can't do this. When you switch out of the netflix app, the movie stops playing, and sometimes even quits playing when you return to the app.

Re:Huh (1)

Cyberax (705495) | more than 3 years ago | (#34392078)

The problem is, back then iPhone was the first mass-market phone with usable browser and multitouch. These were the killer features then.

But by now, every phone has them. And lots more.

WP7 does MT, only not 3rd-party apps (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#34392524)

The built-in apps MT. If you want your self-made app to run while in the background, it won't. You can, however, resume your app where it was when your app did go in the backghround; it's not like you have to start all over. It's ptrobably the way 99% of people use apps, anyway. Right, your GPS tracker software you made for WM 6.5 won't work while you run your tit-jiggle app, but then, hey, there be tits jigglin' and who cares where you are at, or where you been!

Re:Huh (3, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#34390248)

Because the community would rather have stable tested apps over the freedom to write and deploy their own apps... which the vast vast majority of them don't have the skills to do in the first place? That's my guess.

Once again it is over the heads of the community here to see that people really don't want all this freedom in their computing platforms. They just want it to work. They pay for having a working gadget. Why does this escape the average Slashdotter?

Re:Huh (2, Insightful)

Microlith (54737) | more than 3 years ago | (#34390646)

Because the community would rather have stable tested apps over the freedom to write and deploy their own apps... which the vast vast majority of them don't have the skills to do in the first place? That's my guess.

You give Microsoft (and Apple) too much credit. It's all about routing users through their respective App Stores, which allow them to have complete control over the platform and turn every bit of functionality into a revenue source for themselves.

Allowing users to sideload software defeats that entirely.

Once again it is over the heads of the community here to see that people really don't want all this freedom in their computing platforms.

Same goes for PCs, and I'm sure Microsoft would love it if you agreed to hand complete control over your PC over to them. Hell I wouldn't be surprised if they tried to push this lock down model up in the stack over the next few years. So much for being opposed to Trusted Computing, eh?

They just want it to work. They pay for having a working gadget. Why does this escape the average Slashdotter?

Because, quite frankly, LOCK DOWN NOT REQUIRED FOR THIS TO HAPPEN. Yet stupid arguments like this keep getting made. This kind of restriction serves no one but Apple/Microsoft.

Re:Huh (1)

digitallife (805599) | more than 3 years ago | (#34390884)

Apple doesn't have this same restriction. I can easily build my own app and load it on my own phone (or companies phones) without going through the app store for iPhone.

Re:Huh (1)

Microlith (54737) | more than 3 years ago | (#34390968)

Apple doesn't have this same restriction.

Err, yes they do. On-device testing requires paying the $99 fee and you're limited in the number of handsets you can load it on. Additionally, you must load it on each handset manually as it cannot be distributed to end users directly without going through the App Store.

No, Apple and Microsoft are in the same exact lock down boat here. Only differences are the APIs and the fees.

Re:Huh (1)

digitallife (805599) | more than 3 years ago | (#34391304)

Yes you have to pay the $99 developer fee, but the rest is nonsense. Have you even looked at the iPhone business options, or are you simply spreading FUD?

Re:Huh (1)

Microlith (54737) | more than 3 years ago | (#34391460)

Yes you have to pay the $99 developer fee

Why should I have to pay one cent more to use my own property? I've been corrected on the developer having to load the software, but it's still a painfully manual process for users of ad-hoc packages.

Have you even looked at the iPhone business options

Why should I look at business options, I'm not a business.

Why should I have to be a business to write and freely distribute software? Come on, defend DRM and lock down more please.

Re:Huh (1)

grub (11606) | more than 3 years ago | (#34391832)


Why should I have to pay one cent more to use my own property? I've been corrected on the developer having to load the software, but it's still a painfully manual process for users of ad-hoc packages.

Development packages such as Xcode aren't cheap to develop. Apple charges individuals a flat rate for access to the developer program.

$99 is a steal for all the tools they include.

Re:Huh (1)

Microlith (54737) | more than 3 years ago | (#34392088)

Development packages such as Xcode aren't cheap to develop.

But they give it out freely, with each OS.

Apple charges individuals a flat rate for access to the developer program.

No, they charge them the flat rate for the ability to test on hardware and post apps on the store.

$99 is a steal for all the tools they include.

I get all the tools freely from their website. And why should I have to pay $99 if I want to release an app for free, or work on my own device?

Re:Huh (1)

grub (11606) | more than 3 years ago | (#34392314)

Ah shit, you're right. I forgot that I installed Xcode off my DVDs before I paid my $99. Mea culpa!

Re:Huh (1)

digitallife (805599) | more than 3 years ago | (#34392134)

Yes i will defend DRM and lockdown, when it brings a product that is, IMHO, far superior to anything else on the market. Apple has brought some of the most innovative, useable products to the computing stage that have ever existed. I firmly believe that the iOS products would not be as good if you simply let users click a button or whatever to turn off the control apple has over the platform.

Re:Huh (1)

Microlith (54737) | more than 3 years ago | (#34392218)

Yes i will defend DRM and lockdown

Well, I suggest you give up your PC then. Oh and stop using any open source software. Pretty bad when people on Slashdot will aggressively and loudly defend DRM that serves no one but the vendor.

when it brings a product that is, IMHO, far superior to anything else on the market.

My point is that DRM and lock down are not necessary to bring a superior product.

I firmly believe that the iOS products would not be as good if you simply let users click a button or whatever to turn off the control apple has over the platform.

Then by that logic OS X should be a hellhole. Yet it's not.

Re:Huh (1)

digitallife (805599) | more than 3 years ago | (#34392424)

You're being an idealist. Everything is not black and white, good or bad. I know you really don't want to see it, but apple's lockdown is a part of what makes their products good. Mac OS X *is* more locked down than Linux or windows, or had you forgotten? And iOS is better than Mac OS X, at least for most everyday purposes. Sure it's not the only thing that makes the platform great, but it is an integral part. In a perfect world... Sure maybe we wouldn't need DRM or lockdown. Let me know when you find the rabbit hole leading to one.

Re:Huh (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#34392280)

Actually a huge difference between the two. There is absolutely no way to get an app that does not expire on an iPhone via legal means. If you use Ad-Hoc, the app expires in 3 months. If you use Enterprise, it expires in a year. There is no way I can develop an app with and legally distribute it outside of the App Store. And for Businesses this is a huge deal.

Microsoft at least has options. I don’t know the legality of this new “jailbreak”, but even without it, Microsoft is at least open to the idea of allowing side loading Apps, they just don’t want to make it a default options (or make it widely known). From what I’ve heard from other developers, they have made exceptions to corporations to allow for this.

I’m just going to start developing in the platform, but maybe someone can fill in on whether apps you create as a developer actually expire. Even if all the apps I create are for personal (or internal business) purpose, I believe I should always have an option to run MY code on MY device without having to reload it every 3 months.

I love my iPhone and while I will keep it as my main device for the short term, if my new WP7 phone allows me an easy method of loading my personal apps, I can see myself switching in the near future.

And yes, I know I have the option of going with Android. I have not found a device I like on this platform and I’m still not sold on the platform. I might eventually go there, but not now.

Re:Huh (1)

hsmith (818216) | more than 3 years ago | (#34391008)

You don't need an App store to distribute your App with Apple. You can use Enterprise or Ad Hoc.

But I guess "zomg apple sucks!" misinformation sounds better and gets you "Insightful"

Re:Huh (2, Interesting)

Microlith (54737) | more than 3 years ago | (#34391066)

You can use Enterprise

Which is great if you're in an Enterprise.

or Ad Hoc.

Which requires you manually distribute it to a limited number of handsets.

But go ahead, keep defending it with bad examples that still require you to pay $99.

Re:Huh (1)

hsmith (818216) | more than 3 years ago | (#34391216)

No, enterprise does not require you to manually distribute it. Since iOS 4 there has been over their air distribution to unlimited handsets. The major drawback to enterprise is the 500 person threshold.

Ad Hoc certainly has drawbacks, but certainly is doable if necessary but should be easier to distribute.

Please, some more uneducated opinions. Lets bash Apple with what we think we know!

Re:Huh (1)

Microlith (54737) | more than 3 years ago | (#34391386)

No, enterprise does not require you to manually distribute it.

Right, but you're still required to be part of a 500 person company.

Ad Hoc certainly has drawbacks, but certainly is doable if necessary but should be easier to distribute.

Considering you have to bend over backwards to install it and are limited to 100 people, that's a huge drawback.

Please, some more uneducated opinions.

I apologize for not being fully studied on all the pitfalls and limitations on software distribution for an extremely restrictive platform that I, myself, would never use.

Lets bash Apple with what we think we know!

Ah, but it's not hard to familiarize yourself with all the restrictions and drawbacks Apple (and Microsoft) impose upon the system. Suffice it to say, you cannot freely distribute software to anyone with an iPhone without going through the App Store or being an Enterprise. You can distribute it to a tiny subset of people, though.

Gap between 100 and 500 (2, Interesting)

tepples (727027) | more than 3 years ago | (#34391098)

Apple's iPhone Enterprise Developer Program is only for companies with 500 or more employees, and ad-hoc is limited to 100 devices. What is for companies in the gap between 100 devices and 500 employees?

Re:Gap between 100 and 500 (1)

hsmith (818216) | more than 3 years ago | (#34391250)

The 100 device limit for Ad Hoc is certainly a major drawback for non-enterprise accounts. I absolutely agree. Apples advice has been "setup 4 accounts" - which is just a PITA.

Re:Huh (1)

Bucky24 (1943328) | more than 3 years ago | (#34391242)

You don't need an App store to distribute your App with Apple. You can use Enterprise or Ad Hoc.

Ad-hoc only allows your app to be installed on a certain number of devices (I think the limit is 100?). It is meant for testing, or maybe custom software for a small business, not any serious attempt at deployment.

Re:Huh (1)

LO0G (606364) | more than 3 years ago | (#34391094)

As I understand it, Apple doesn't make any profit from their app stores. Seriously. All the revenue they get barely pays for the cost of running the store.

For Apple, the app store is a way of providing value to the expensive devices that they sell. I'm not sure what MSFT's motive is.

Re:Huh (1)

SharpFang (651121) | more than 3 years ago | (#34390752)

Why do you believe the "No, never, not allowed, won't happen" approach is preferred over "Use at your own risk if you choose so" approach? Android has this little neat option "Allow applications from untrusted and 3rd party sources" which you must find in menu and enable manually. People who don't want unreliable apps leave the option unchecked and that's it. The users are completely free to remain within the stable, tested realm, but that's no reason to expressly forbid, fight and deny access to other apps if the user chooses to.

Re:Huh (1)

digitallife (805599) | more than 3 years ago | (#34390966)

If the option exists, then eventually most people will be exposed to an app they really want but requires them to click that button and turn off the safety of the app store. I think it's fine to force people to jailbreak to get that kind if freedom on this kind of platform.

Re:Huh (1)

Microlith (54737) | more than 3 years ago | (#34391020)

If the option exists, then eventually most people will be exposed to an app they really want but requires them to click that button and turn off the safety of the app store.

Nonsense. Most people would likely never leave the safety of the App Store, and with a default of "off" for non-App Store software it's easy to encourage people to be a little more pro-active.

Hell I'd be happy if doing so required you to power the unit down and hold a button as it powered on, so long as you so much as had the option of doing so.

I think it's fine to force people to jailbreak to get that kind if freedom on this kind of platform.

No, jailbreaking means you're forced to violate EULAs and use local exploits to take control over your property from a vendor who very much does not want to let you.

No "Unknown sources" on AT&T (1)

tepples (727027) | more than 3 years ago | (#34391138)

Android has this little neat option "Allow applications from untrusted and 3rd party sources" which you must find in menu

The "Unknown sources" checkbox is nowhere to be found on a few AT&T handhelds (such as Motorola Backflip and HTC Aria), and I'm not aware of AT&T telling customers about this up-front.

Re:Huh (1)

wvmarle (1070040) | more than 3 years ago | (#34390996)

Because the community would rather have stable tested apps over the freedom to write and deploy their own apps...

You mean the apps that end up in the various stores are actually tested? Beyond "it installs" and checking the description given by the developer?

Re:Huh (1)

99BottlesOfBeerInMyF (813746) | more than 3 years ago | (#34390458)

Why would they copy Apple in this area?

MS wants to put out a stable, good performing phone OS. Locking it down to vetted apps from people who register weeds out a lot of malware as well as a lot of apps that will make the performance of the battery and other apps terrible giving users the impression that the OS/phone sucks. Further, it gives MS more control in case they want to lock things down in future. It requires developers to learn MS's dev tools, thus adding yet another block to cement MS's domination of the desktop OS market. Additionally, this will allow MS to prevent pornographic or overly violent apps from running on the phones, and as much as many of us dislike that, most of the populace seems to consider it a feature.

Basically, for many reasons MS thinks this will get more copies of their new OS out there and running on phones people are using, so MS can try to gain traction in the market.

Sandboxing, energy use, damaged goods (1)

tepples (727027) | more than 3 years ago | (#34391264)

Locking it down to vetted apps from people who register weeds out a lot of malware

So does proper sandboxing of applications. See OLPC Bitfrost [laptop.org] for an example of how to do it right.

as well as a lot of apps that will make the performance of the battery and other apps terrible

Then the battery management application should list what applications have used the most energy, where energy is estimated from cumulative CPU time, camera time, GPS time, etc.

Further, it gives MS more control in case they want to lock things down in future.

This is the actual antifeature. Microsoft is intentionally selling what economists call damaged goods [wikipedia.org] .

Re:Sandboxing, energy use, damaged goods (1)

99BottlesOfBeerInMyF (813746) | more than 3 years ago | (#34391568)

Locking it down to vetted apps from people who register weeds out a lot of malware

So does proper sandboxing of applications. See OLPC Bitfrost [laptop.org] for an example of how to do it right.

While I'm a big fan of Bitfrost style sandboxing, you're missing part of the picture here. Android, iOS, and Windows 7 Phone Edition, all use sandboxing already. But who configures the sandbox? Users clearly don't have the expertise, so like with the OLPC you end up with a vendor doing it for the user. That's what the App stores are.You go there and download apps and ACLs.

as well as a lot of apps that will make the performance of the battery and other apps terrible

Then the battery management application should list what applications have used the most energy, where energy is estimated from cumulative CPU time, camera time, GPS time, etc.

Assuming doing that level of monitoring doesn't hurt performance itself, why do you think users will look at the "battery management" application? That's really more for geeks trying to get them most out of their batteries. Normal people just use their phones until they run low, then complain about it. Your solution helps geeks, but provides no motivation for MS to implement it.

Re:Huh (2, Interesting)

wvmarle (1070040) | more than 3 years ago | (#34390956)

I'm surprised too, but for a slightly different reason.

Microsoft's stronghold is businesses. They always try to market as a one stop shop, providing all software from servers to desktops. Standardise on Microsoft is what many companies do. And MS seems to know that and cater to their needs with corporate installation keys, allowing companies to run their own update servers, etc.

And bigger companies of course have their own internal applications as well - Microsoft should know that very well.

It's only logical to me that MS would market their phones to businesses first: it's also from MS so relative easy to market, and presumably relative straightforward integration in existing networks. Don't bother too much with the consumer market, but make sure that when a company needs to issue phones to its workers, that this are Windows phones.

But then naturally support for internal applications follows. It seems they do not even have a way for companies to set up their internal app store, and that's the part that surprises me most. Because that's where they could get big companies to go for their phones over the competition.

That should work. After all, in large businesses, the decision makers are not the end users.

Re:Huh (1)

99BottlesOfBeerInMyF (813746) | more than 3 years ago | (#34391340)

It's only logical to me that MS would market their phones to businesses first: it's also from MS so relative easy to market, and presumably relative straightforward integration in existing networks.

MS has been trying to market phones to business for many years and getting beaten to death by RIM. They've poisoned their brand in the business smartphone market. Additionally, MS's modus operandi is to dominate a market first, then worry about making money. Business clients are not a big enough segment to pull that off overall, so they have to go after the iPhone and they need to concentrate somewhere first. If they gain any real market share, they'll go after business soon enough.

I'm sure, like copy/paste, MS will be getting around to providing a way to distribute an app outside their market both for development purposes and for internal apps. It's just not the top of the priority list yet.

Re:Huh (1)

nine-times (778537) | more than 3 years ago | (#34391958)

Well here's the thing that most analysts won't tell you: the business market ultimately tends to go to whatever is considered a status symbol by executives. Blackberry's success in the enterprise market is only partially due to technical benefits of their devices/software. A lot of their success has been because around 10 years ago, someone decided that having a Blackberry was a symbol that you were extremely important.

Frankly, iPhones started making inroads in the enterprise before they were technologically ready. Whether or not the IT people will thrilled with the idea, if the CEO or VPs wanted to use their iPhones, then the iPhone became a supported platform. You'll hear lots of justifications and technical arguments after the fact, but the actual decision is as much as anything determined by why the PHB thinks is cool.

Re:Huh (1)

drinkypoo (153816) | more than 3 years ago | (#34391154)

Because Microsoft saw that Apple's users were happier with less flexibility.

Re:Huh (1)

nschubach (922175) | more than 3 years ago | (#34391454)

"Happier"... or blissfully ignorant of any other option? (not meant to be offensive)

Re:Huh (1)

drinkypoo (153816) | more than 3 years ago | (#34392122)

What's the difference? Those of us who care are aware of other options. Some of us who are aware of other options still don't care. I'd say they're happier.

Apple may have copied Microsoft (2, Interesting)

tepples (727027) | more than 3 years ago | (#34391282)

Why would they copy Apple in this area?

One might guess that Apple copied Microsoft. The App Store rate structure ($99/yr to develop on a device that you purchased, plus a 30% cut of sales) is almost word-for-word copied from App Hub (formerly XNA Creators Club) and Xbox Live Indie Games.

Re:Huh (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#34391388)

Because they're dumb.

The openness was the killer feature for WinMo 6.x. Every app I installed on my WinMo 6 phone except for Opera was GPL'ed.

Now they took away the only reason to have a Windows smart phone.

Re:Huh (1)

Abcd1234 (188840) | more than 3 years ago | (#34391476)

Why would they copy Apple in this area?

Because the carriers want it.

The carriers are doing the *exact same thing* with Android, too. The average Slashbot fandroid just doesn't like to admit it outright.

Re:Huh (1)

Microlith (54737) | more than 3 years ago | (#34391558)

Last I checked only AT&T was doing it, and IIRC they did it to only two handsets (which were rooted anyway.) Do you know of others that don't allow non-Market software?

Re:Huh (1)

Abcd1234 (188840) | more than 3 years ago | (#34391650)

Last I checked only AT&T was doing it, and IIRC they did it to only two handsets (which were rooted anyway.) Do you know of others that don't allow non-Market software?

Uh, most of them don't by default. Most require you to go through some set of machinations to jailbr... err... "root" the phone. AT&T just took it one step further by attempting to block the activity. And I absolutely guarantee you it'll only get worse.

Carriers have absolutely *no* interest in allowing arbitrary software to run on devices connected to their networks. None.

Re:Huh (1)

Microlith (54737) | more than 3 years ago | (#34391776)

Uh, most of them don't by default.

As I understand it, there's a dialog where you can explicitly allow non-Marketplace software, and this was removed only on the AT&T handsets. Rooting isn't necessary for that (while it is for other things) last I checked.

That said, it is crap. They'd hate my N900, that's for sure.

Re:Huh (1)

Abcd1234 (188840) | more than 3 years ago | (#34391864)

That said, it is crap. They'd hate my N900, that's for sure.

Correct. And fundamentally, that's my point. People are so shocked that Apple and Microsoft limit the software that can be installed on their phones, but fundamentally, it's the carriers that are primarily responsible for this. If Apple and Microsoft want to play in the smartphone game, they're stuck working with the requirements carriers place on them.

IMHO, the only reason Google gets away with not enforcing this stuff more strictly is that a free OS is hard for the device manufacturers and carriers to pass up, even if it means its tougher to lock down.

Re:Huh (1)

Microlith (54737) | more than 3 years ago | (#34392160)

People are so shocked that Apple and Microsoft limit the software that can be installed on their phones, but fundamentally, it's the carriers that are primarily responsible for this. If Apple and Microsoft want to play in the smartphone game, they're stuck working with the requirements carriers place on them.

Nah, I have to call shenanigans. Android devices and handset vendors need the discounts, so they have to play ball. Apple does the exact same thing, but they also do it to devices like the iPod Touch, iPad, and Apple TV and none of those have anything to do with the carriers.

By far, Apple and Microsoft are more than happy to lock things down and control their users.

Re:Huh (1)

Abcd1234 (188840) | more than 3 years ago | (#34392276)

Apple does the exact same thing, but they also do it to devices like the iPod Touch, iPad, and Apple TV and none of those have anything to do with the carriers.

They use the same OS, so why is that surprising? ie, it's as much collateral damage as anything else. And, frankly, they have no reason to treat those platforms differently... it creates software development, testing, deployment, and support headaches, as they would suddenly have to have different versions of the OS running on different platforms. It just ain't worth it. It's simpler to just lock all the platforms down and treat them the same way.

Awesome! (0, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#34390262)

I'm sure the other two people who use Windows Phone 7 will appreciate it.

I'm totally shocked. (2, Insightful)

MrCrassic (994046) | more than 3 years ago | (#34390270)

Nah, this could'nt have possibly been an inevitably of a locked-down operating system in the world of jailbroken iPhones and rooted Android devices...

Re:I'm totally shocked. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#34390392)

Yes. Apparently, and in direct contradiction with all reason and good sense, people don't like being disempowered and limited to small sets of options.

People seem to prefer devices that empower them and give them choices, so they can do dangerous things like buy cheaper or better products from competitors.

People really need to learn to fall in line.

btw Its Windows Phone, or Windows Phone 7 (1, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#34390286)

Can we not call it Windows 7 Phone? Its Windows Phone.. as in Windows Phone OS 7, is it really that confusing? I thought we were nerds here

Re:btw Its Windows Phone, or Windows Phone 7 (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#34392516)

I don't think many people actually care.

Running developed apps directly on the phone? (0)

magsol (1406749) | more than 3 years ago | (#34390304)

Could we get this feature on jailbroken iPhones too? I'd love to be able to write an app and upload it to my phone immediately.

Re:Running developed apps directly on the phone? (3, Interesting)

thePowerOfGrayskull (905905) | more than 3 years ago | (#34390528)

Get a BlackBerry - then you don't need to jailbreak in the first place, as you're able to install whatever you want, from wherever you want, and whenever you want ;)

Re:Running developed apps directly on the phone? (5, Interesting)

Microlith (54737) | more than 3 years ago | (#34390794)

Or an N900, then you get a much more standard Linux style OS instead of something wholly proprietary like the BlackBerry OS.

C++ to Java? (1)

tepples (727027) | more than 3 years ago | (#34391470)

Get a BlackBerry - then you don't need to jailbreak in the first place, as you're able to install whatever you want

As long as the developer has paid the $20 fee. (Unsigned apps apparently cannot make SSL connections.) This is less than Apple's iPhone fee, for example. But BlackBerry runs only Java. What's the easiest way to port the business logic of an application written in C++ or Objective-C to the Java virtual machine, and then update the Java version when the C++ version changes or vice versa?

Re:Running developed apps directly on the phone? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#34391916)

What ? Are you from the past ?

Re:Running developed apps directly on the phone? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#34390580)

Eh, what? I was under the impression you could already do this -- hell, wasn't that the big iPhone fanboy justification for how the App Store doesn't give Apple unreasonable control, because you can always pay the $100, compile unapproved apps (which would apparently all be open source), and load them on your own phone?

Android (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#34390426)

So can this used to install Android?

Microsoft is the most evil of all! (0, Flamebait)

oic0 (1864384) | more than 3 years ago | (#34390470)

Hope their new 7 phone crashes and burns. They deserve it for all of the DRM thats rendered windows as just limited license instead of a piece of software you can own. Even more evil than apple.

Nice try (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#34391284)

My bet is Microsoft released the tools themselves in the hope of shipping units instead of ending up with another dead platform.

I didn't realize it needed one (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#34391332)

Despite all the "this isn't news" posts - this was news to me ... I didn't realize Windows 7 Phone apps had to go through a marketplace like with Apple ... I guess it's off my list of phone options now ...

Read between the lines. (1)

Lashat (1041424) | more than 3 years ago | (#34392062)

Seriously, slashdot users are supposed to be savvy. Obviously, some are NOT savvy enough to understand what is really being said in this story. Corporate is just a replacement for users, but it makes the jailbreak sound so much more robust, safe, and official. Welcome to marketing speak for your jailbreaking apps.

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