Very good news out of Cupertino just now. It took quite a bit of negative press, but Apple has finally caved in: the company is dropping its restriction on third-party development tools for iOS. Also, the company has published all its App Store review guidelines out in the open for the first time. It took a little too long, but very good news nonetheless.
Apple released a short press release today, one that doesn’t come across as particularly friendly – it would appear Apple is doing this not because it believes it is right, but because circumstances force them to. The company is dropping the third-party tools restriction, as well publishing all its review guidelines online.
“We are continually trying to make the App Store even better,” Apple writes, “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.”
All development tools – including Adobe Flash CS5 – are now allowed, as long as they do not download any code. Apple claims this will give developers the flexibility they need, while at the same time preserving the security of the iOS.
“In addition,” the company adds, “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.”
This is great news for iOS application developers, and therefore, for iOS users the world over. Now let’s grab a bag of chips and watch the Apple fanatics who supported the ban suddenly herald this move as totally justified Cupertino brilliance (I kid, I kid).
Apple’s blunder was that it introduced the restriction after the platform was already mature. If it had set the restrictive parameters from the outset, it would have had more room to manoeuvre.
Who would have thought?
Do we have the FCC or the courts to thank?