Apple’s strategy of a “walled garden” now seems to be inspected by U.S. antitrust authorities. The Wall Street Journal reports that the Federal Trade Commission and the Justice Department are overhauling Apple’s latest license change for the iPhone OS SDK 4.0. Although the process is at a preliminary stage, the interest of antitrust authorities show how powerful Apple has become in the field of mobile computing.
Some critics contend Apple is now engaging in the kind of tactics that got Microsoft Corp. in trouble with antitrust enforcers in the 1990s. “Apple is playing right out of Microsoft’s playbook—and it’s one they complained about a lot,” said David Balto, a former FTC official now at the Center for American Progress, a left-leaning think tank.
Apple could try to head off trouble with antitrust enforcers by changing the terms of its developer agreement, one person familiar with the situation said.
According to ArsTechnica.com Apple’s latest update of the iPhone SDK agreement contains terms that explicitly forbids developers to use the iPhone SDK to be used to create applications that require jailbreak.
We don’t expect that this will either stop people from developing apps for jailbroken iPhones, as we feel this is a problem Apple addresses in the wrong manner, nor do we think this will stop the hackers like the iPhone Dev Team to create jailbreaks. As long as certain applications (like browsers) are not allowed in the AppStore and as long as Apple denies access to the underlying BSD Unix, people will go on enabling these features on a different way.
The recent developments like the CydiaStore show that there is a market for Apps that run on jailbroken iPhones.