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back to article Apple: third-party iOS dev tools OK after all

Apple has said is to allow software developers to create iPhone and iPad apps using tools it does not directly sanction. "We are relaxing all restrictions on the development tools used to create iOS apps," the company said in a statement released this afternoon, "as long as the resulting apps do not download any code. "This …

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Title.

"as long as the resulting apps do not download any code."

Interesting. I wonder if this includes in-app purchases of addons that include code? (If such a thing is possible) or do all apps need to include the code for all addons and purchases just unlock the functionality? I have never looked into how addon purchasing actually works so have no idea.

Steve.

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Patch!

That's easy enough to get around - Write the code for the addon, include it in an update patch (that's free to everyone), but disable it the new functionality unless the necessary data files are there, then allow the app to download these data files separately. That's generally how xbox/ps3 DLC works

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Simple?

You put the code required to support your purchasable items out as an update to the whole app on the App Store, then people are simply downloading the graphical assets etc as their in-app purchases. (Or even, as you say, simply unlocking existing, hidden functionality within the app)

Never developed an app store app but that's my guess, anyway.

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Stop

Yuck

Yeah that's just what the platform needs, an army of shoddy fucking flash script monkeys set loose in the app store.

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WTF?

Re: Yuck

Yeah, just watch the store get flooded with thousands of lame fart apps. Oh, no, wait...

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Jobs Horns

'code'

Are they defining what code is anywhere? Sure, Flash is out, but there's a very wide spectrum of data and formats that could be considered code. We need to know, lest we incur His iWrath

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Rob
Bronze badge

Sounds like...

... the Marketing and business development depts have wrestled some control away from Jobs. Apple's greatest move would be to get rid of Steve Jobs or it could be their downfall.

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WTF?

yes, he's really made a mess of it over the last few years hasn't he?

Rob, what planet are you on? You may prefer 'Free' / clunky / tinkerable / cheap-as chips , but Jobs has demonstrated quite convincingly that there is a big and profitable market for slick / integrated / usable / value / quality and yes, beautiful.

Apple perfect? No of course not. But on the whole 10x better than most other gadgets and computers I've come across. Give the man some credit for what he has done to Apple. And he seems to be doing fine with his other company, Pixar / Disney.

Edwin

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FAIL

WTF ?

"Apple's greatest move would be to get rid of Steve Jobs or it could be their downfall."

Pick one ?

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@AC

Jobs may have done well or the company in the past, but his recent behaviour around the app store and iPhone 4 are laughable. It's amazing to me that all the apple fanboys just let this slide. For the price of one of those phones and as highly touted as they are, I'd be screaming over the lies and "fix" that was pushed. But you folks just keep drinking the coolaid.

And have a look at market share. Apple iOS is on the decline and Android is climbing steadily. Jobs/Apple know this and are scrambling for a solution. This is just one attempt to stem the flood. And it will fail.

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Rob
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Flame

@AC (or Edwin)

My reality is grounded on cost and performance especially when referring to electronic kit, I don't see Apple's products marrying the cost vs performance part though. Example being my phone does all that the iPhone does out of the box bar any Apple specific products/services and costs a mere fraction in terms of ownership. The same can be said for my PC's at home, they cost a lot less and in particular my desktop quad core's speed is like slippery poo off a greased spade, all for a mere £500 and no tinkering needed (small white lie, I added another SLI graphics card for that extra whooph).

Last time I checked Jobs was a board member of Disney / Pixar and I think the success of Disney was well established before he became a board member by default due to the Pixar aquisition. Ignore me though as what I've said might distort your reality bubble a bit, drink more kool-aid and all will be well again.

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WTF?

Questions...

Is this a total abandonment of the Jobsian crusade then? If Adobe put out the tools they previously pulled, will apps made using them be allowed?

If so, surely a monumental climb down which surely could only have come about through presumed legal implications of so obviously picking on one company's tools?

Or have I missed something here?

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Sounds as though ..

Apple is getting increasing attention from competition authorities. If you bar one recompilation tool, then you have to be totally pure and bar the lot, without exception.

I suspect a Reality Inspector has pointed this out to His Steveness and has also mentioned the amount of $$$$ that Adobe could suck out of Apple's coffers if he continues with his one rule for Flash and another for everyone else.

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FAIL

Reality Distorted ?

"Apple is getting increasing attention from competition authorities."

Really ? Which ones ? What does the sound of Apple getting increased attention sound like ? Do you have a .wav file ?

"If you bar one recompilation tool, then you have to be totally pure and bar the lot, without exception."

No. That is all.

"I suspect a Reality Inspector"

Consider to me to be the reality inspector for this comment, so far I have discovered nothing.

"... and has also mentioned the amount of $$$$ that Adobe could suck out of Apple's coffers if he continues with his one rule for Flash and another for everyone else."

On what grounds exactly ? Have Adobe filed suit ? Did they tell you this ? Did they release a statement to the press or just phone you up and tell you directly ?

Clearly Steve Jobs is not the only person with a reality distortion field.

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Jobs Horns

I found an Apple-shaped troll

I doubt that the sudden antitrust stuff slammed at Apple was a simple coincidence. It came right after Jobs started his anti-semit^Wanti-Flash crusade. Of course, they couldn't keep banning Flash and at the same time, allowing other devkits to generate iPhone apps. If Jobs had banned those other tools, there's a good chance that all those app devs would've flocked to other platforms, like Android.

It is probably not under the "monopolistic practice" per se, but "unfair competition" might be the issue here.

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Boffin

Mmm! Pass the kool-aid!

Full disclosure: I work for Appcelerator, but my opinions are my own, yadda yadda.

"Really? Which ones? What does the sound of Apple getting increased attention sound like?"

http://www.theregister.co.uk/2010/05/03/doj_and_ftc_exploring_apple_antitrust_inquiry/

http://www.theregister.co.uk/2010/06/10/apple_gov_probe/

http://www.theregister.co.uk/2010/08/11/eu_investigation_apple/

It sounds like web links, really. Although in all honesty, I doubt that was the primary motivator. While the "No. That is all." comment is technically correct, the issue isn't facts in as much as perception. The app store rules (Or rather, their unknown state and the verbiage about interpreted code) served as FUD against Apple. Apple is heavily pushing the iPod touch as a games platform. But most games DO use interpreted code, from entire setups like Unity to more minimal embedded interpreters like Lua. This is done everywhere, in all platforms, not only for portability but for rapid development and stability (so you don't have to worry about memory management of dialog trees), so the specter of an app being rejected for this is enough to scare prospective developers away. And that's bad business to both devs and Apple.

I am led to believe that Adobe's income of CSS for the Mac is significant, and that Adobe would not cut off its nose to spite its face. More accurately, I think that various teams inside Adobe are independent, and so Photoshop would not sacrifice its revenues in revenge for Flash.

And while the Flash issue did hog center stage, it's a bit of a red herring in terms of interpreted code. Or rather, the fact that it has code interpretation is orthogonal to most issues mentioned in Jobs' "Thoughts on Flash." One of the 'painful experiences' mentioned may be referring to when Mac OS X came out, and some third party layers, even non-cross-platform ones written in C or C++, were slow to support the changed API.

What will be watch-worthy is how Adobe reacts, and moreover, the fate of flash-built apps going forward. Will they go through unscathed? Will they be rejected for different reasons? Will they be stuck in review limbo, neither approved nor rejected? Issues of stability, speed, and UI are all valid reasons for rejection that ensnare native apps, and could possibly be used against flash apps.

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Fixed

"We are relaxing all restrictions on the development tools used to create iOS apps, UNTIL WE CHANGE OUR MINDS AGAIN"

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Silver badge
Flame

Every OS should ban Adobe Malware

Just as an FYI you don't have to be a Apple fanboi to hate Adobes software. In fact as far as I can tell you just have to understand some basic concepts about software like stability, security, and performance to hate Adobe. Apples' fanbois are ultimately correct to hate Adobe but hating because your cult leader say too is the wrong reason.

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Gold badge

Hurray!

Lazy bad coders rejoice. You can now bring your sub-optimal cross ported crapware to iOS so iPhone owners can enjoy the same crummy applications that Android users get.

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Anonymous Coward

Good move ...

I'm a happy first gen ipod touch owner and I am not sure that would be the case if it was a real computer.

I have enough computers in my life already. I really don't want a tiny computer in my pocked, I just want to be able to listen to mp3's, play some games while waiting inline, check my email, IM, text, check my bank account ...

So I understand Apple's curated/locked down approach to iOS. I can't break it, I can't visit a sight that can download something that breaks it.

However this business with banning apps written in other languages was BS from the start.

And can people please stop with the fart app remarks .. the ONLY way to see a fart app is to go to the app store and search for "fart".

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Facts?

'The anti-Adobe stance was a result of the very public fight the two companies had earlier this year'

I believe this to be an assumption and not a fact.

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