USB Forum smacks down beleaguered Palm; sides with Apple over Pre’s iTunes mooching

“Palm may be out of moves in its battle to have the Pre continue syncing with iTunes,” Jim Dalrymple reports for The Loop. “The USB Implementers Forum rendered its decision today and in a letter seen by The Loop, the group sided with Apple.”

Dalrymple reports, “Palm reported Apple to the USB Implementers Forum [USB-IF], a member group that oversees the implementation of USB in the industry, in late July. Palm said it believed Apple was improperly using the Vendor ID provided by the forum.”

Full article here.

Arik Hesseldahl reports for BusinessWeek, “Writing for the USB-IF, Traci Donnell, the organization’s executive director, wrote that ‘Palm’s allegation (if true) does not establish that Apple is using its Vendor ID contrary to USB-IF’s policies.’ In short, Apple, by limiting access to iTunes to Apple-made devices only, isn’t doing anything wrong, at least not according to USB-IF policies.”

“However, Palm’s July 22 complaint letter also contained this: ‘Palm will shortly issue an update of its WebOS operating system that uses Apple’s Vendor ID number for the sole purpose of restoring Palm media sync functionality.’ Here Palm is saying it plans to issue software to the Pre that allows it to masquerade as an Apple iPod when talking to iTunes,” Hesseldahl reports.

“Whoops. That’s a no-no, Donnell writes. Under USB-IF’s policy, ‘Palm may only use the single Vendor ID issued to Palm for Palm’s usage… Usage of another company’s Vendor ID is specifically precluded.’ She then gives Palm seven days to ‘clarify its intent,'” Hesseldahl reports.

Full article here.

MacDailyNews Take: Winners win and losers lose, Lurch mini™. Now stand by for class action lawsuits filed on behalf of Pre sufferers to whom Palm advertised iTunes mooching — just as soon as they can get some lawyers on the horn; right now their Pre units need to be replaced due to shoddy build quality or their batteries are all recharging for the 3rd time today already.

[Thanks to MacDailyNews Readers “Jubei” and “Ken” for the heads up.]


  1. “Palm will shortly issue an update of its WebOS operating system that uses Apple’s Vendor ID number…”

    There is dumb, there is stupid, there is crazy, there is mad, and then there is Palm so desperate that they admit to violating the rules of the standard’s body that they are complaining too.

  2. @Madmac – My 1st Generation iPhone lasts +2 days between charges and I use the WiFi constantly. Granted I don’t have GPS or 3G, but 3G isn’t anywhere close to us in Central PA so it would be wasted money anyway. My original data plan is still only $20 a month since I don’t have a 3G phone. Not a bad trade off.

  3. What is completely insane is that Palm allows Apple to have any part in the Pre user experience. That is a strategic blunder of the highest magnitude.

    Can you imagine Apple introducing the iPod in 2001 and then saying “We’re going to use Microsoft Media Center software to sync everything.” And, “Oh, by the way, we haven’t actually gotten permission from Microsoft to do so.”

    Dumb, dumber and dumbest.

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