Apple Clamping Down on Jailbreaking, Other Practices with Latest iPhone NDA

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Date: Thursday, April 2nd, 2009, 08:19
Category: iPhone, Legal

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With iPhone OS 3.0 en route, Apple appears to be taking a more aggressive stance against develops writing applications for jailbroken iPhone handsets. Per an Ars Technica article, Apple has recently updated its “iPhone Developer Program License Agreement”, the new version explicitly disallowing jailbreaking, assisting in jailbreaking, and developing and distributing jailbreak apps.
The report goes on to mention that while previous agreements forbade the creation of apps that violate privacy, facilitate crimes, or violate intellectual property laws, the new one restricts developers from jailbreaking their own phones.
Back in February, Apple publicly defined its legal stance on iPhone jailbreaking, arguing that it represents copyright infringement and a DMCA violation. During this time, an Electronic Frontier Foundation proposal asked for an exemption that would allow jailbreaking of iPhones or other handsets, effectively liberating the devices to run applications other than those obtained from Apple’s own iTunes App Store.
The report also states that developers are also “forbidden from using the iPhone OS, SDK, or other developer tools to develop applications for distribution in any way other than the App Store or Ad Hoc distribution.” The new changes place significant restrictions on distribution, which is now only available via the App Store at Apple’s sole discretion.
The report also notes that updated segments of the NDA specifically restrict jailbreaking or circumventing the iPhone’s built-in OS security. Though such agreements aren’t likely to entirely prevent third-party developers from writing applications, they will likely discourage developers from submitting their unapproved or rejected app on other distribution outlets that offer alternatives for customers interested in buying, testing, or installing with their software.
The text defining these restrictions reads as follows:

(e)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; and
(f) Applications developed using the Apple Software may only be distributed if selected by Apple (in its sole discretion) for distribution via the App Store or for limited distribution on Registered Devices (ad hoc distribution) as contemplated in this Agreement.

Last September, Apple extended its iPhone Developer NDA by restricting the information that developers could discuss publicly by telling developers in its App Store rejection letters that “the information contained in this message is under non-disclosure.” While discussion of details in iPhone development is generally restricted, numerous developers have complained publicly about rejections without repercussion.
If you have two cents to hurl in about this, let us know in the comments or forums.

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Marketcircle Releases Daylite Touch

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Date: Wednesday, April 1st, 2009, 18:40
Category: iPhone, Software

Yesterday, Marketcircle Inc. released Daylite Touch to the App Store allowing users of their CRM software, Daylite, to synchronize their data to their iPhone or iPod Touch.
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From the Marketcircle web site,

“Daylite Touch is a business productivity manager for the iPhone and iPod touch, designed as a companion to Daylite on the Mac. Winner of a 2009 Macworld Best of Show award, Daylite Touch helps you manage your business and your team, keeping everyone on the same page and helping you stay on track and deliver on time.”

Daylite has been an award winning business solution serving as a contact, calendar, and project database for the Mac. The desktop client allows data to be synchronized to multiple computers, and now with Daylite Touch, data can be as handy as your mobile phone. The app was demonstrated at the 2009 MacWorld Expo, but was not ready for launch.
The app can be downloaded for free from iTunes now and requires Daylite Server and firmware 2.2 on the iPhone and iPod Touch
UPDATE:
While the Daylite Touch app is free to download from the App Store, a license must be purchased from Marketcircle for each copy of Daylite Touch being used with Daylite Server. The price is $49.99 per license, per year.

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Equity Firm’s Report Points Toward Two Architecturally Unique iPhones in Development

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Date: Wednesday, April 1st, 2009, 08:53
Category: iPhone

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A report released by little-known equity research firm Lazard Capital Markets could points towards two architecturally distinct models of iPhone being developed for release this year.
“Our checks confirm that two versions of iPhones will be introduced this year,” Lazard Capital Markets semiconductors analyst Daniel Amir wrote in the opening paragraph of the report. “Production of the new phones should start at the beginning of April and will ramp in May.”
According to AppleInsider, the analyst stated that both models are likely to be introduced in June, one being a “high-end” model while the other represents a “low-end” version.
Unlike analyst reports earlier this year, which suggested Apple was developing a scaled down iPhone in addition to a new high-end model as part of a volume play, Amir said he believes the two models will target different geographical regions rather than different classes of consumers.
“We believe it is possible that the two phones will be aimed at different regions,” he wrote. “The high-end version is expected in North America and Europe, and the low-end version may be for the BRIC countries [Brazil, Russia, India, and China] or China only.”
Amir suggested that the high-end version will have video capability, a better camera and 32GB of storage. Tthe low-end version will include less storage, no video functions, and possibly lack Wi-Fi (a move which could potentially cater to the demands of Chinese wireless carriers).
Last fall, stories emerged that wireless carrier China Mobile had asked Apple to supply iPhone handsets with both Wi-Fi and 3G features disabled.
In addition, various code strings present in the first external beta of iPhone OS 3.0 have been titled “iPhone 2,2″ and “iPhone 3,1″. Apple makes changes to the first numeral in these kind of identifier strings to distinguish products from their predecessors or family members only when there’s a significant architectural difference between the two.
Within the report, Amir also told clients that iPhone shipments for the first calendar quarter of the year ending tomorrow could come in as high as 4 million thanks to record shipments for the month of March.
“Our checks suggest that March iPhone shipments have been much stronger than previously expected and may reach 1.5 million units, which is the highest level over the past five months,” he said. “Total iPhone shipments in [first quarter of 2009] are therefore tracking slightly higher than Street expectations of 3-3.5 million units and could reach 3.8 to 4 million units.”
The analyst then went on to suggest that second quarter shipments could surge as high as eight million units.
“April shipments, including both the current and new versions of the iPhone, could increase 40%-50% month-over-month, and be up another 20%-30% month-over-month in May,” he wrote. “Accounting for the new versions of the iPhone shipping in April, total iPhone shipments in [the second quarter] could reach 7-8 million units, which equates to approximately 3-4 times last year’s shipments during the same period.”
If you have anything to add to this, please let us know in the comments or forums.

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Apple Releases iPhone OS 3.0 Beta 2 to Developer Community

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Date: Wednesday, April 1st, 2009, 08:13
Category: iPhone, Software

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Late Tuesday, Apple officially released iPhone OS 3.0 beta to to its developer community. According to Engadget, the new beta includes push notifications and in-app purchasing, giving developers a chance to play with these features. The report also cites significant stability improvements within the new build.
While MMS and tethering are also included within beta 2, Apple has apparently asked developers not to try these features as of yet.
Per the Apple Core, Apple has also made the following changes in beta 2:

  • B2 killed a lot of the typing lag, and scrolling problems.
  • Some speed improvements.
  • Some stereo bluetooth controls are working (play and pause). Others (rewind and fast forward) are not.
  • There’s a new Store option under Settings, but it’s empty.
  • New icon in the left side of the menu bar to indicate when call forwarding has been enabled.
  • Despite Apple’s warning against MMS and tethering, they can be enabled by modifying the ipcc file (the carrier settings). They both work in b2 in the U.S. although some countries have trouble getting them to work at the same time, but they work, regardless of the firmware.
  • The exchange email bug that prevented you from syncing to your corporate email was fixed.
  • New way to open a new page in Safari: Tap and hold on a link and a menu pops up allowing you to open, open in new page or copy the link (or cancel).
  • The iPhone OS beta 2 build can be downloaded from here upon signing up for an ADC account.
    If you’ve tried the new build, please let us know what you think of it in the comments or forums.

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    iPhone OS 3.0 Beta Bricking Pirated iPhones

    Posted by:
    Date: Monday, March 30th, 2009, 10:56
    Category: Hack, iPhone

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    This was sort of to be expected, but it’s interesting.
    According to the Los Angeles Times, users installing a pirated version of Apple’s upcoming iPhone OS 3.0 firmware are finding their iPhone handsets effectively bricked, wherein the handset loads to the activation screen.
    At this point, they’re in trouble.
    Per the story, the version of iPhone OS 3.0 floating around the Web checks with the mother ship to make sure that the user has an active and paid up Apple Developer Connection account.
    Once in place, there’s no way to roll back to version 2 of the software.
    As mentioned on the Apple Core, a few YouTube videos have sprung up purporting to offer solutions. The first suggests that you can simply disconnect from the Internet when interfacing with iTunes to bypass the authentication process. The second video involves data files and appears far more involved.
    Fortunately, users can get their iPhone swapped out under warranty at the Apple Store, or pony up the US$100 for an ADC account in order to resolve the issue.
    If you’ve seen this issue on your end, please let us know in the comments or forums.

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    Skype for iPhone Expected Tomorrow

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    Date: Monday, March 30th, 2009, 06:33
    Category: iPhone, Software

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    Months after an initial preview at CES in Las Vegas, Skype for iPhone is expected to hit Apple’s App Store sometime tomorrow.
    According to C|NET, which was able to sit down and play with the application, the program will sport standard features generally found in mobile applications as well as a few iPhone-only perks.
    For starters, the screens are well organized and use the iPhone’s ability to add filters, for instance, to sort your contacts alphabetically, or by who’s online. The application also allows for chatting and a relatively cheap per-minute fee to landlines. The application only allows calls if you’re in range of a Wi-Fi network and calls will not work over the cell phone network on the iPhone (but chatting will.) Assuming your connection is solid, you can dial a number or quickly call a contacts stored in your address book. iPod Touch users will need earphones with an embedded mic to talk. During a call, users can mute the line, go on hold, or put the call on speakerphone.
    The current build of the program can accept incoming conference calls. While you won’t be able to initiate a call, users will be able to jump on one if a buddy invites you in.
    Features missing from the first release of the app on the iPhone include SMS, setting up a conference calling group, purchasing SkypeOut credit directly, and being able to field a second incoming Skype call are a few as well as file transferring and getting Skype voicemail.
    Stay tuned for additional details as they become available and let us know what you think of Skype on the iPhone in the comments or forums.

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    Apple Begins Selling Contract-Free iPhone 3G at Full Price

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    Date: Friday, March 27th, 2009, 09:40
    Category: iPhone

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    As of Thursday, Apple retail locations have begun selling unrestricted quantities of the company’s iPhone 3G handset at the non-subsidized price of US$599 for the 8GB version and US$699 for the 16GB version. Once sold, the buyer does not need to have an existing AT&T contract.
    According to AppleInsider, activation can completed by the customer at home through iTunes.
    Though the handsets are still technically (and legally) locked to AT&T service, it’s possible (but not supported) to unlock the phones for use with other mobile service providers such as T-Moble and Metro PCS, although both GSM providers do not support the 3G network the iPhone 3G needs to connect at faster than EDGE speeds.
    Apple’s change in sales policy comes as the company is working to sell off remaining inventory to prepare for the upcoming launch of the new 2009 iPhone, which is expected to be released around the middle of June.
    The launch may be expected to take place around this year’s Worldwide Developers Conference, which will take place yet again in San Francisco, California.
    If you’re en route to pick up a contract-free iPhone, please let us know about the experience in the comments or forums.

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    iPhone 3G Details, Specifications Emerge on China Mobile Web Site

    Posted by:
    Date: Tuesday, March 24th, 2009, 12:42
    Category: iPhone

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    iPhone photos and product specifications have now appeared on the web site of wireless carrier China Unicom, a sign that a deal may have been reached between Apple and the Chinese carrier.
    According to AppleInsider, the information provided on the web site does not specifically indicate whether the Apple handset will be available from China Unicom, but joins references to similar handsets like the Android-based G1 that will be supported by the carriers upcoming 3G network.
    The site changes emerged one week after China Unicom representatives met in the United States with Apple executives in what has been described as a “breakthrough” negotiation session aimed at bringing the iPhone 3G to China Unicom’s network.
    A spokesperson at China Unicom headquarters could not explain why the information had been posted on one of the carrier’s regional websites, though it’s reportedly not uncommon for the company’s branches to operate independently.
    A launch was said to hinge largely on China Unicom’s first trial run of its new 3G network this May. In contrast to China Mobile, which is endorsing the government’s TD-SCDMA wireless standard, China Unicom will be running its first trials for an iPhone-compatible WCDMA network. Such a standard would let Apple sell its current handset virtually unchanged with full feature support.
    Although Apple has long pursued a deal with China Mobile, the world’s largest cellular provider with over 415 million subscribers, talks reportedly stalled over the government-backed carrier’s insistence on controlling the local version of Apple’s App Store, among other demands.
    Stay tuned for additional details as they become available and let us know what’s on your minds in the comments or forums.

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    Canadian iPhone Subscribers Cite Rogers Wireless Overcharges

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    Date: Tuesday, March 24th, 2009, 08:44
    Category: iPhone

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    A number of Canadian iPhone subscribers have cited being overcharged for their data usage according to an article on MacNN, Per the notes received the Rogers Wireless initial data plan for the iPhone 3G, which retails for CAN$30 per month, may have been revoked. In one case, a bill for “hundreds of dollars” was received, a result of the original data plan having mysteriously disappeared from his account.
    The problem is allegedly widespread amongst Rogers iPhone customers, and believed to be connected to alterations of a person’s account, such as a change in address or phone number. Given that the promotional code for the CAN$30/6GB plan no longer exists, discounts may simply be evaporating as accounts are recreated. Users who signed up for the CAN$30 price were originally promised that it would persist throughout their three-year contract.
    Calls to Rogers’ support staff has apparently been unable to fix this problem and representatives may have chose to push iPhone account holders to more expensive plans while compensating with account credit. The 6GB plan itself only came into existence after a large Internet petition highlighted the impracticality of proposed tiers.
    If you’re north of the border and have seen this issue on your end, please let us know in the comments or forums.

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    AT&T Officials Slip Details About Next-Gen iPhone

    Posted by:
    Date: Tuesday, March 24th, 2009, 08:56
    Category: iPhone

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    One of more AT&T senior officials may have reportedly revealed important details about the next-generation iPhone handset, including a June release and boosted speed specs.
    According to Boy Genius Report, an AT&T official was quoted as stating that a formal unveiling for the new handset will occur in mid-June and that the mid-year update is “becoming a tradition” at AT&T.
    While it’s not quite known how familiar the management-level source (or sources) might be with what’s contained in the new iPhone, a distinct pattern in the remarks centers on the speed of the handset. According to the remarks, the next model “will be faster” and may well support AT&T’s planned upgrade to 7.2Mbps 3G scheduled for this year.
    AT&T is reportedly eager to demonstrate the advantages of a new handset and upgraded network. Per the comment, customers should buy a smartphone from AT&T based on their personal tastes and that “the gap in credibility should be filled” with the new release.
    It’s currently unclear as to which specific features will find their way into the next generation and the iPhone OS 3.0 release has left a wide amount of room for speculation. Others have stated that the changes will also apply to older iPhone models.
    The statements also echo AT&T’s vision of integration with TV services and claim an iPhone app is in development that would let users steer the video recorders for AT&T’s U-verse digital TV.
    The mention of a June schedule also isn’t exclusive to AT&T; UAE provider Etisalat matter-of-factly stated that it would get the next iPhone in June.
    Stay tuned for additional details as they become available and let us know what you think in the comments or forums.

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