Apple relaxes restrictions on third-party iOS development tools

InvisibleSHIELD.  Scratch Proof your iPhone 4!Apple today released a statement regardingn App Store review guidelines. Here it is, verbatim:

The App Store has revolutionized the way mobile applications are developed and distributed. With over 250,000 apps and 6.5 billion downloads, the App Store has become the world’s largest mobile application platform and App Store developers have earned over one billion dollars from the sales of their apps.

We are continually trying to make the App Store even better. We have listened to our developers and taken much of their feedback to heart. Based on their input, today we are making some important changes to our iOS Developer Program license in sections 3.3.1, 3.3.2 and 3.3.9 to relax some restrictions we put in place earlier this year.

In particular, we are relaxing all restrictions on the development tools used to create iOS apps, as long as the resulting apps do not download any code. This should give developers the flexibility they want, while preserving the security we need.

In addition, for the first time we are publishing the App Store Review Guidelines to help developers understand how we review submitted apps. We hope it will make us more transparent and help our developers create even more successful apps for the App Store.

The App Store is perhaps the most important milestone in the history of mobile software. Working together with our developers, we will continue to surprise and delight our users with innovative mobile apps.

Source: Apple Inc.

MacDailyNews Note (added 11:30am EDT): This does not mean Apple iPhone, iPod, and iPad users will be able to use Adobe Flash while browsing the Web. This is about using third-party tools to develope iOS apps.

Read more about the changes via Daring Fireball here.

MacDailyNews Take: So, how’s it feel to be jerked around, Adobe? You guys like it? Jump little doggy! Now roll over and play dead.

Looks like the FTC, the EC and whatever other acronyms are going to have to find other things on which to waste the taxpayers’ money. We’re sure they’ll all have no problem doing so.

Obviously, developers having App Store Review Guidelines is a Very Good Thing™.

Hopefully, these moves will result in innovative apps, not just a proliferation of lowest common denominator app excretion. We don’t need a bunch of crappy ports that fail to take advantage of iOS’ unique capabilities.

46 Comments

  1. @Big Als MBP

    Well gee, let me think…
    a) Maybe they’ve been using Adobe’s tools for years, like them and are comfortable with them ?
    b) Maybe they like the idea of being able to use the same environment and programming language and mostly the same code to write apps for Mac OS, Windows, Linux, iOS and Android ?
    c) Maybe they just don’t feel like learning yet another environment/api/language that isn’t used for anything other than iOS development ?
    d) And OMG lets not forget, maybe they are traitors who don’t have Macs and can’t afford to buy one just to develop iPhone apps ?

    Yep, I’m pretty sure this applies to a “few” developers out there.

  2. Hordur Thordarson:

    If you can’t afford tools of the trade ( in this case a Mac), then you are either an amateur who wants to get paid while pretending to be a pro or a useless developer who can’t make money.

    We need professional quality well written Apps not a bunch of amateur attempts and half ass products.

  3. The problem I see with most posts in this thread is that people simply do not understand how Steve Jobs thinks, nor do they “get” the Apple philosophy.
    I can guarantee that Apple did not concede a thing, they did not back up or back down; this is not about Adobe nor Flash. A door was opened to allow a future, yet unannounced product in. If, in so doing, Adobe’s product can now be used, it is only because of the direction Apple is choosing to go. Ya really think Steve would back down, even to the Government which did NOT have any kind of case anyway?
    This reminds me of when, after Apple announced the SDK and the future of apps on the iPhone, a lot of people claimed credit for “forcing” Apple to do so, when in fact, the plan was in place even before the first iPhone was announced.
    Pretty hard to out think someone who is years ahead of you.
    What is Steve Jobs thinking about today?
    You’ll hear about it in a couple of years.

  4. @grwisher
    I arrived relatively late to the Click-to-Flash party, but it has greatly improved my browsing experience. I had not realized how pervasive Flash had become on the web, but that explains why it felt like my broadband connection was degrading towards dial-up speeds. I like to open multiple tabs to let things load in parallel, and I had been encountering major slowdowns – sometimes effectively to a standstill. Flash *was* the culprit. Now I am Flash-free, except when I choose to enable a Flash object.

  5. I hope this mean apps like TexExpander will now be less useless(more useful) and allow me to sync my text shortcuts…or…snippets and not have to use the TextExpander app itself and then cut and paste the text to wherever I need it.

  6. RicMac:

    Absolutely right.

    It’s the fiction of illiterate writers who mis-use words and don’t understand what they hear, who write sensational headlines like “Apple concedes…” to create a basis for their baseless articles.

  7. …”If you can’t afford tools of the trade ( in this case a Mac), then you are either an amateur who wants to get paid while pretending to be a pro or a useless developer who can’t make money.

    We need professional quality well written Apps not a bunch of amateur attempts and half ass products.”

    Breeze,

    While your statement may apply to a sizable number of Flash creators (I can’t really call them developers), there are many professional Flash developers with over 10 years of experience on the platform, who grew with it to where it is today. These people are responsible for some of the most creative and immersive implementations of interactive content on the web. We all know that vast majority of Flash online could be easily done in HTML, using CSS and some JavaScript. However, there are plenty of sites with very complex Flash-based applications (just look at PBSkids.org, NickJr.com, PlayhouseDisney.com…).

    These developers are experienced, very proficient and productive. They are capable of developing to specification, and by opening up the iOS platform, Apple gave these guys the ability to write code only ONCE and deploy it on all platforms. Apple will still have to screen their submission to the iOS platform, but if it is good enough, then their application will be available to EVERYONE.

    Adobe Flash and iOS SDK are extremely different tools, and porting some code (or even high-level design) from one to the other is a nightmare. Apple’s decision will make it unnecessary.

  8. Predrag:

    Nothing you write contradicts, nor to I have any exception with anything you state…

    …”If you can’t afford tools of the trade ( in this case a Mac), then you are either an amateur who wants to get paid while pretending to be a pro or a useless developer who can’t make money.

    We need professional quality well written Apps not a bunch of amateur attempts and half ass products.”

    The above comment was made to dismiss what was understood to be a poor excuse for not wanting to write code with Apple’s SDK : not being able to afford a Mac to write App Store Apps. It’s point was that if you make a professional living writing apps and you are indeed worth your salt, then buying a Mac is par for the course and an obvious cost of doing business.

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