Apple relaxes rules for iPhone-iPod-iPad applications

Apple on Thursday loosened rules for applications built for its iPhones, iPods, and iPads in a move that promises to make it easier for friends and rivals to get programs on the popular gadgets.

The California company also pulled back the curtain on its long-private review guidelines that third-party applications must meet to get into Apple's online App Store.

"We have over 250,000 apps in the App Store," the developer guidelines said. "If your app doesn't do something useful or provide some form of lasting entertainment, it may not be accepted."

The more open stance was expected to appease software makers who have complained about constraints on code for Apple gadgets and the mystery shrouding the App Store vetting process.

"It is a softening by Apple to the developers," said Gartner mobile analyst Van Baker.

"Before, developers felt they were submitting applications into a black hole and had no idea what criteria were applied. Now, in refreshingly frank language, they have an idea of the criteria applied," he said.

Apple is by no means throwing its doors completely open to developers, but they are showing flexibility and communicating more directly with software makers, according to the analyst.

Third-party applications are key to the popularity of smartphones.

"With all the high-end smartphones, if you don't have applications the devices don't have much appeal," Baker said.

The new licensing rules would allow developers to write programs with Adobe's Flash video software and then convert them into the iOS format acceptable to Apple.

Apple has banned the use of Flash on the iPhone, iPod Touch and iPad and Thursday's revision of the rules still does not permit the use of Flash on the devices.

"A developer can start in Flash and end up in code acceptable to Apple, but that doesn't mean you can run Flash on the iPhone or iPad," Baker said. "You would need to download the Flash Player on the device, and you can't do that."

Instead of Flash, Apple devices support video built using HTML5, a fledgling software format created by a group of technology firms including Google and Apple.

Apple left plenty of room for discretion in the application vetting process.

"We will reject Apps for any content or behavior that we believe is over the line," Apple said in its guidelines.

"What line, you ask? Well, as a Supreme Court Justice once said, 'I'll know it when I see it.' And we think that you will also know it when you cross it."

The California company said it had listened to developers and took much of their feedback to heart.

"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," Apple said. "This should give developers the flexibility they want, while preserving the security we need."

Apple mobile gadgets run on an iOS software platform. Blocking the download of code is seen as a security measure to prevent hackers from slipping malicious software onto devices.

The looser rules should make it easier for software makers to craft similar versions of App Store applications for smartphones that compete with iPhones.

It appeared as though there was also the potential for Apple gadgets to be opened to applications serving ads from Google or Admob, which is owned by the Internet powerhouse.

"This is great news for everyone in the mobile community," Google vice president of product management Omar Hamoui said in a blog post. "We believe that a competitive environment is the best way to drive innovation and growth in mobile advertising."

Adobe shares soared on Wall Street on Thursday, gaining 12.11 percent to close at 32.86 dollars while Apple shares were up 0.06 percent to 263.07 dollars.

PROMOTED VIDEO
Life and Style
ebookA wonderful selection of salads, starters and mains featuring venison, grouse and other game
Life and Style
Phillips Idowu, Stella McCartney and Jessica Ennis
fashionMcCartney to continue designing Team GB Olympics kit until 2016
Sport
Shinji Kagawa and Reece James celebrate after the latter scores in Manchester United's 7-0 victory over LA Galaxy
football
Voices
voicesGood for Lana Del Rey for helping kill that myth, writes Grace Dent
Sport
Farah returns to the track with something to prove
Commonwealth games
Life and Style
fashion Designs are part of feminist art project by a British student
Independent
Travel Shop
the manor
Up to 70% off luxury travel
on city breaks Find out more
santorini
Up to 70% off luxury travel
on chic beach resorts Find out more
sardina foodie
Up to 70% off luxury travel
on country retreats Find out more
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

ES Rentals

    iJobs Job Widget
    iJobs Gadgets & Tech

    SQL Report Analyst (SSRS, CA, SQL 2012)

    £30000 - £38500 Per Annum + 25 days holiday, pension, subsidised restaurant: C...

    Application Support Analyst (SQL, Incident Management, SLAs)

    £34000 - £37000 Per Annum + excellent benefits: Clearwater People Solutions Lt...

    Developer - WinForms, C#

    £280 - £320 per day: Progressive Recruitment: C#, WinForms, Desktop Developmen...

    Java Developer

    competitive: Progressive Recruitment: My Client are a successful software hous...

    Day In a Page

    Backhanders, bribery and abuses of power have soared in China as economy surges

    Bribery and abuses of power soar in China

    The bribery is fuelled by the surge in China's economy but the rules of corruption are subtle and unspoken, finds Evan Osnos, as he learns the dark arts from a master
    Screwing your way to the top? Good for Lana Del Rey for helping kill that myth

    Screwing your way to the top?

    Good for Lana Del Rey for helping kill that myth, says Grace Dent
    Will the young Britons fighting in Syria be allowed to return home and resume their lives?

    Will Britons fighting in Syria be able to resume their lives?

    Tony Blair's Terrorism Act 2006 has made it an offence to take part in military action abroad with a "political, ideological, religious or racial motive"
    Beyoncé poses as Rosie the Riveter, the wartime poster girl who became a feminist pin-up

    Beyoncé poses as Rosie the Riveter

    The wartime poster girl became the ultimate American symbol of female empowerment
    The quest to find the perfect pair of earphones: Are custom, 3D printed earbuds the solution?

    The quest to find the perfect pair of earphones

    Earphones don't fit properly, offer mediocre audio quality and can even be painful. So the quest to design the perfect pair is music to Seth Stevenson's ears
    US Army's shooting star: Lt-Col Steven Cole is the man Hollywood calls when it wants to borrow a tank or check a military uniform

    Meet the US Army's shooting star

    Lt-Col Steven Cole is the man Hollywood calls when it wants to borrow a tank or check a military uniform
    Climate change threatens to make the antarctic fur seal extinct

    Take a good look while you can

    How climate change could wipe out this seal
    Should emergency hospital weddings be made easier for the terminally ill?

    Farewell, my lovely

    Should emergency hospital weddings be made easier?
    Man Booker Prize 2014 longlist: Crowdfunded novel nominated for first time

    Crowdfunded novel nominated for Booker Prize

    Paul Kingsnorth's 'The Wake' is in contention for the prestigious award
    Vladimir Putin employs a full-time food taster to ensure his meals aren't poisoned

    Vladimir Putin employs a full-time food taster

    John Walsh salutes those brave souls who have, throughout history, put their knives on the line
    Tour de France effect brings Hollywood blockbusters to Yorkshire

    Tour de France effect brings Hollywood blockbusters to Yorkshire

    A $25m thriller starring Sam Worthington to be made in God's Own Country
    Will The Minerva Project - the first 'elite' American university to be launched in a century - change the face of higher learning?

    Will The Minerva Project change the face of higher learning?

    The university has no lecture halls, no debating societies, no sports teams and no fraternities. Instead, the 33 students who have made the cut at Minerva, will travel the world and change the face of higher learning
    The 10 best pedicure products

    Feet treat: 10 best pedicure products

    Bags packed and all prepped for holidays, but feet in a state? Get them flip-flop-ready with our pick of the items for a DIY treatment
    Commonwealth Games 2014: Great Scots! Planes and pipers welcome in Glasgow's Games

    Commonwealth Games 2014

    Great Scots! Planes and pipers welcome in Glasgow's Games
    Jack Pitt-Brooke: Manchester City and Patrick Vieira make the right stand on racism

    Jack Pitt-Brooke

    Manchester City and Patrick Vieira make the right stand on racism