One of the biggest criticisms of the iPhone App Store was the approval process. Developer aren’t keen on having a big-brother presence deciding whether their apps can be deployed on the iPhone. This leads some to jailbreak, this leads others to complain every day about how the iPhone should be opened.
I’ve had my first real clash with the Open Handset Alliance today. Wifi Tether for Root Users, an app I’m a contributor for, got banned from the Android Market for violating the Developer Distribution Agreement.
The reasoning provided is a rather twisted web, as it turns out. According to the agreement:
“Google enters into distribution agreements with device manufacturers and Authorized Carriers to place the Market software client application for the Market on Devices. These distribution agreements may require the involuntary removal of Products in violation of the Device manufacturerâ€™s or Authorized Carrierâ€™s terms of service.”
Woah, so much for the open market.
This raises some interesting questions about this “open” platform.
But it also lends support to the argument that it’s not Apple who banned Tethering – it’s the carriers. This isn’t surprising – tethering enables Voice over IP, it enables streaming, it reduced the need for wired, fixed broadband and it pretty much eliminates the need for mobile broadband dongles. The carriers would like you to buy all three.