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Apple Being Apple
Right now they can't much get away from being dirt.
So Apple are being Apple again. They rejected Google Voice. Which got the whole world against them. The fury at Digg and Reddit was considerable with nary a good comment about what had been done and many posters swearing they'd never again use an Apple product.
And Om Malik says it was Apple's doing and Gruber swears it was AT&T's. Realistically it can only be one of three scenarios anyway. And at the end of the day it's Apple who hold the switch.
Ted Landau, Gruber, and others have questioned the quality of the App Store approval process but no one outside the social sites questions its existence. People use Android and other platforms where anyone can put anything they like on their devices. But Apple can't do that. For there's a booby trap back down the road if they reverse their policy.
Early jail breakers found Apple had effectively reduced Unix security to that of Windows security. Everyone was running as root - which is the full equivalent of the chaos that persists on Windows. Nothing much has changed here - all Apple did since those first releases was introduce code signing.
As demonstrated at this site, code signing is worthless on open systems. The only way code signing works on the iPhone is Apple's iPhone insists on it. But to do this they need all developers to turn over their hard work to Cupertino where Apple can slap a root certificate on the software they like.
It's an ideal situation for Apple, it maintains a highly attractive image for users, but it sure sucks for developers. You have to get an iPhone first to ever make participation possible (even if you don't want one). You have to become an iPhone user even if you'd rather ignore the thing. You have to register as a developer with Apple. You have to learn the new API (which for seasoned Cocoa developers isn't going to be a big hurdle). Then you have to hone and tweak your masterpiece, submit it, and sit back and wait.
Apple have a remote switch to disable or destroy software on iPhones worldwide. Steve Jobs admitted it. They haven't used it so far but they could at any time. They certainly didn't implement the switch because they had no plans on using anything of the sort.
Mack Diesel says Google are threatening Apple's ecosystem and that rings true. Spotify are also threatening Apple's ecosystem and their iPhone client - a brilliant piece of engineering and design - is submitted for approval by the anonymous mighty at time of writing.
Will Apple junk the Spotify iPhone client too? They're dirt if they do and dirt if they don't. Right now Apple can't much get away from being dirt.
Yet there's no way Apple weren't aware this could happen. There's no way they aren't prepared for this. People have short memories. Reprehensible system or no, check back in three months to see if the dirt's washed off.
With the latest app rejection being Google Voice, I am one step closer to selling off my iPhone products and focusing entirely on the Mac once more. I can't help but feel that I've wasted the past 9 months of my life building on a platform that is so hostile and anti-developer.
- Justin Williams