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back to article Apple yanks C64 emulator from App Store

Many Register readers seeking the Commodore 64 emulator application for the iPhone, which finally made it to Apple's App Store yesterday, were disappointed not to be able to find it. Here's why: Apple pulled it. Apple originally rejected the emulator, called simply C64, some months ago. Developer Manomio appealed against the …

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Grenade

Hot Coffee 64?

I do find this idea of developers increasingly not removing code blocks but just disabling them brilliant!

We all do it, but if you've been asked to remove it, unless it causes the application to crash and burn, surely, you just take it out?

I spose that in this case, it needs that, because... well isn't that what it is?

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Anonymous Coward

Simple solution

Don't bother developing for the iPhone.

Yeah it's doing well, but it's still small fry compared to the amount of Windows Mobile, Blackberry, Linux and Symbian devices already out there. In fact, it's not even gaining ground on the latter three.

Despite all Apple's hype and media manipulation they're still bottom of the pile in handsets out there, and Nokia is still extending it's lead by a massive amount month on month. They're only just on par with RIM's sales.

Ultimately the iPhone will hit a plateau though also, they only have one handset line and like the vast majority of the population worldwide if you're not in the brick sized, expensive, finger print smothered handset market then you're not going to buy one of these. Apple can sell to it's fanboys, and it can sell to the odd non-business smartphone users but then what? Just was with the iPod now, it'll start to fizzle out, people will stop caring, and it'll start losing marketshare again. Of course, the MP3 market was relatively new, so it was able to become market leader, the phone market is mature, so any decrease will ultimately lead to Apple being resigned to the history books of the mobile phone markets as their attempt to gain a permanent foothold is forgotten and people go back to worthwhile handsets that businesses and home users alike can use.

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Basic

"Apple's logic was that this tool could allow users to run illegal copies of games, holding it open to a charge of contributory copyright infringement."

More like someone could run software without getting the OK from Apple. Even if that was a crappy C64 program typed in from an old Commodore magazine... they can't have that.

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I love typing entire programs out in BASIC!

Especially on an iPhone keyboard! Great work Apple you have saved me from hours of trying to work out how to program Chuckie Egg in BASIC when it was never written in that language to begin with.

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Flame

A quick google search....

and... http://www.google.co.uk/search?q=winmobile+c64+emulator

Haha! Stupid Apple fanboys. Get a device which doesn't cost more than your income tax per month without the draconian controls Herr Jobs imposes.

Fools.

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Bronze badge
WTF?

Pirated games in *BASIC*???

How many commercial games were ever written in BASIC? None? Anybody know what Apple's real hangup is about this?

For a company that made a splash with an Orwellianesque anti-Big Brother commercial, these guys look like Animal Farm incarnate.

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Still there for jail broken phones

You can still get it if your phone is jail broken, from Installous

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(Written by Reg staff)

@Brian Miller

You might not input a game in Basic, but you might write a game loader, perhaps.

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Jobs Horns

I think they should

pull the iPhone's MP3 playback feature because it could be used to play pirated songs!

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Gold badge

I wouldn't expect them to..

Will they relent? I wouldn't expect them to. Emulators are forbidden by Apple, I would guess it was let through to begin with by accident. Remember the IPhone (un-hacked) is not a smartphone, it's a fancy phone with an app store. A smartphone lets you install whatever software you want, a phone with an app store lets you install whatever the cell phone company and phone vendor allows.

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Anonymous Coward

Yank Safari too then?

Anyone care to host some copyrighted javascript and point out to Apple they're "open to a charge of contributary copyright infringement" by allowing Safari too run on iPhones.

What a load of tosh

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@Brian Millar

Every Napoleon needs his Snowball to keep the proles in line; in this case it's MS, upon whose BASIC implementation CBM's was based - licensed perpetually, natch.

Nice analogy, by the way.

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Gates Halo

Commodore BASIC

was partly written by Bill Gates himself, and is still copyrighted by Microsoft, so there are legal issues when it comes to including it.

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Jobs Horns

Nokia N900 for the win

Do what you want with your own device. How fcking radical.

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Stop

yeah........sigh..it is a title

BASIC COMMAND INTERPRETER!!!

YE GODS!

ALERT ALERT! God forbid anyone doing something with their iPhone that doesn't involve paying money to someone.

Phew that was a close one!

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What use is this?

So if you can't use the basic interpreter than what use exactly is a C64 emulator?

Unless you can load .C64 files using a virtual drive - but I thought thats the reason it was blocked in the first place?

You might as well jut spend your money on an animated gif of a blue cursor....

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Coat

Its about software sales

You spend all that money, sign your soul away with the contract and be mocked for all of your 'Big Night Out' pics being lighter blurs in a big black blur and then play C64 games on it?

You dont need an app store you need a course in common sense.

Mine the one with the old free lappy and 1000 C64 games on cd in the pocket

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FAIL

Tight Arse Control Freaks

More paranoid controlling behavior from the anally retentive control freaks at apple.

These pathetic attempts to enforce by hook or crook complete control over what runs on their platform are going to drive many away.

For all the charges of anti-competitive behavior, Bill Gates never accepted a policy that all windows apps must be approved by Microsoft committee - history and their market share in desktop OS installations vindicates this strategy.

Unless they are hell bent on being the walled-garden mobile also ran apple must change tact - these stories judging by online discussion are turning a lot of people vehemently against them.

I for one am selling my iPhone and getting an open handset running Android cause frankly i'm sick of apple's freakish controlling behaviour.

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@Brian Miller

Did you never buy Cascades Cassette 50?

I blame in for my becoming a tester rather than a developer, but I think I still have the calculator watch that it effectively came free with kicking around somewhere...

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and they complain About MS monopoly

The real bad giuy is Apple. But as long as their is a unlimited supply of idiots. Apple wil flourish

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Gates Horns

Erm

Wasn't the Commodore basic written by Bill Gates?? Don't want another homebrew club letter again ;) and i'm sure Steve doesn't want a joust with Balmer.

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Fruity Excuses

"Apple's logic was that this tool could allow users to run illegal copies of games, holding it open to a charge of contributory copyright infringement."

Given how much Apple enjoys exercising power under the DMCA, and they probably even lobbied for it in the first place, it's amazing how they try to weasel out of scrutiny by claiming legal exposure for stuff other people make.

Yet another case of "We were only following orders! Our orders!"

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Coat

@Tony Smith

"... but you might write a game loader, perhaps."

What would that be then?

10 LOAD "*",8,1

20 RUN

or maybe we'll get fancy:

10 LOAD "$",8

20 LIST

Mine's the one with "SYS64738" on the back

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Oooo, tall poppy syndrome

It's an Apple product, and a luxury at that, If you don't like it...move along. Save the kerfuffles for 'need' items instead of 'want' items.

I'm assuming if BASIC or its brethren are enabled on the iphone, someone will find a new way to jailbreak or cause other problems.

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Well...

"How many commercial games were ever written in BASIC? None?"

For the C-64? Quite a few. Even the ones written in assembly used BASIC loaders, for the most part. More to the point, most of the good pirate hacks loaded though BASIC. Copy protection often used things like custom boot loaders, which could just be replaced with a simple BASIC program.

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Apple, are you bunch of wankers listening?

THIS is why I won't buy an iphone.

please fix.

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@AC 14:00

"Yeah it's doing well, but it's still small fry compared to the amount of Windows Mobile, Blackberry, Linux and Symbian devices already out there. In fact, it's not even gaining ground on the latter three."

Erm, no. You should check the sales figures for iPhones vs BBs vs WinMo devices, and you'll see that the iPhone is streets ahead of the latter, and closing on RIM.

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Jobs Horns

Do Apple a favour & turn yourself in

Dear Apple,

Thank you so much from protecting me from myself. Had I downloaded the C64 app I may have inadvertently downloaded a 25 year old game without the appropriate copyright license. Leading to the collapse of the entertainment industry and hefty prison sentence for myself. If only other products that I own and have paid for would censor me in the same way.

I'm praying for the day my iMac alerts me when I'm whistling a tune with out written consent from the original copyright holder.

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clarkson

"draconian controls Herr Jobs imposes" - pandering to UK tabloid national stereotypes, by any chance ?

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Tough shit.

I hope Apple buyers love the jail their few hundred quid and expensive tariff bought them.

Meanwhile, the rest of us will continue to use our phones as we wish on cheaper contracts.

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Grenade

@Brian Miller

"How many commercial games were ever written in BASIC? None?"

Jeff Minter's rox64 was written in BASIC. I had a proper commerical copy of it.

(Okay it wasn't very good, but then most games aren't.)

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Pirate

yeah but....

has anybody got doom or starcraft to run on a winphone yet?

if not... why not...

hurry up

or why not any of the late 80's early 90's pc games that required naff graphics screens

and ran on only a few meg of storage/ram.

once ppl can run games like that apple will allow amiga games to run, if only to be able to compete with the overwhelming competition...

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Silver badge

New advert tag line...

The new iPhone

You'll forget who actually owns it.

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lawyers are dawn

Seems the lawyers run the apple show.

How many older games developers would be affected by this and how many of that small number could have done a deal with apple or the c64 guy to play nice and possibly cross promote or profit share...

perhaps in a world where the first 10 numbers on your speed dial are lawyers we are losing site of the other businesses and opportunities that DONT involve lawyers.

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Bronze badge

What a load of crap

Using the same logic any text editor or similar is forbidden - after all, I may use the application to type in some song lyrics or other copyrighted material. Oh and the built-in phone book - after all an entry may contain a trademark used in an improper fashion. I know Apple have made some dodgy app store decisions in the past but this one really takes the biscuit.

Now is the time for iPhone owner to start returning handsets as defective. There's nothing physically wrong with them but Apple's policies are now removing capabilities that it has been promoted with. "More or less anything" it ain't.

Of course it won't happen. Your typical iPhone owner is so far up the arse of Jobs they can't see shit even when completely surrounded by it.

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WTF?

Come on you lot, use your noggins!

I've no idea what the "exploit" was, but if knowledge serves me right about C64 emulation, if the emulator can read the binary disk/tape dumps and BASIC interpreter can take the command:

load "*",8,1

Then you're sorted for bucket loads of free stuff, some good, some bad and some that might upset your granny, even in cruddy C64 resolution. Basically Apple can't control the sub-content, if you like.

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FAIL

@ AC 14:00

Where are you getting your info from? Surely not this site. How much % do the others pay for your apps? This company wants eyeballs and cash NOW not dreams and hopes. And Windows Mobile? Gawd; where do you get off? You've completely forgotten about the iPod Touch! The publishing company Kiloo also develops games for Hands-On-Mobile™ and they too make games for iPhone, Android, RIM, Java, BREW, Windows Mobile, etc.

Sorry, but it's not 1996.

.

...I've just realised... I fed a troll!

http://www.kiloo.com/brand_hugothetroll.html

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FAIL

@AC "Simple solution"

Apple aren't making it easy to love them as a developer. Yes you can easily get an SDK for the iPhone from Apple but it only runs on Leopard and Snow-Leopard. So if I want to develop for the iPhone I have to shell out for an overpriced iPhone contract and buy an overpriced Mac. On the other hand I could just continue to use a free Symbian SDK and have a larger target market. If I really feel the need to expand to another market then the Windows Mobile SDK is readily available and also gives me a much larger market than Apple.

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Jobs Horns

Ah ha!

Glad I grabbed it yesterday., and the truly obvious RESET "hack" worked perfectly.

10 PRINT "PETE23 RULES"

20 GOTO 10

Worked perfectly and I can see why Apple would want to prevent me from doing this. I'm now going to type in a game from an old edition of Commodore User.

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@ Simple solution

Depends. If there's any truth to the iTablet rumours there may be some mileage in it yet.

Speaking of iWhatsits, it IS September but it has gone astonishingly quiet. Almost as if there is embargoed news around the corner. Anyone?

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Boffin

Poke, Poke, Poke

Yup, you can write an app loader in basic that will be able to load apps and execute them, in binary form.... that will access the filesystem, and possibly other phone resources.

Also, there MAY be a way to use a buffer overflow inside the emulator to execute some code natively in the iPhone, so a malicious program may:

1 - Load a payload inside the emulator and break it to execute the payload as an iPhone program, and NO as a C64 program

2 - Once the payload is executing as an iPhone app, it may do a lot fo nasty things, only limited by the ability of the iPhone Security ( ehem ... )

So yes, may seem an overkill, but the emulator MAY be a vector to the phone.

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Gates Horns

Bill Gates

@Brian Miller "Anybody know what Apple's real hangup is about this?"

Bill Gates’ Personal Easter Egg?

WAIT6502,1

http://www.pagetable.com/?p=43

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Jobs Horns

Why don't Apple...

... Just start selling DRM'd Commodore 64 games via iTunes? ;-) Everyone's a winner ;-)

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Coat

@Tony Smith @@ Brian Miller

"You might not input a game in Basic, but you might write a game loader, perhaps."

So where do you plug in the tape recorder?

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@Simple solution

The trolls are out in force I see. Still don't let the truth get in the way of 'facts' as you call them. This chart from Gartners, one of the largest analysts on the planet should educate you a little.

Twunt.

http://fortunebrainstormtech.files.wordpress.com/2009/08/picture-31.png?w=497&h=196

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@Brian Miller (again)

Apple's hangup on Basic being included in the C64 image is probably due to the fact that some company in Redmond Washington (USA) holds the copyright to the Basic interpreter. They supplied almost all the Basic's for 8 bit machines (there were exceptions, but VERY few). Of course they don't supply Basic interpreters any more, but they STILL hold the copyright!

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Anonymous Coward

Turing Machine emulation...

...and if I write one for the iPhone would it be pulled to because you can run any computer programme on it...

On the other hand, I could just write for Nokia's Linux phone ....

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Bronze badge
WTF?

Hang on a mo...

"Apple's logic was that this tool could allow users to run illegal copies of games, holding it open to a charge of contributory copyright infringement."

What? So why can you get an uncontrolled dev suite for OS X on Macs? If someone did a C64 emulator (I'm sure they already have [good work!] but I can't be bothered to go looking for it) for an iMac, are Apple content that in that case they're not contributing to copyright infingement? Afterall, they are providing the means by which such a thing can be created.

Personlly I reckon Apple are scared that Sun will do a Java implementation in C64 basic.

I'm sticking to my nice Sony Ericsson.

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@Brian Miller & @Tony Smith

"How many commercial games were ever written in BASIC? None? Anybody know what Apple's real hangup is about this?"

Gut feeling is it has to do with who owns the copyright on Commodore's version of BASIC ...

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@AC

If you assert it, it will be true.

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