iOS 4.0 SDK sparks developer backlash

iPhone OS 4.0 - not universally popular
iPhone OS 4.0 - not universally popular

A changed clause in Apple's iOS 4.0 SDK agreement has left some developers fuming, with fears that it effectively outlaws Adobe's forthcoming Flash to iPhone compiler.

Developers use programs like the Flash to iPhone compiler to save time, but a wording change could potentially see the practice penalised by Apple.

This would mean that developers cannot get their apps through the Apple vetting and onto the Apple App Store.

Clause and effect

The new clause 3.3.1 of the iPhone Developer Program License Agreement now includes the following:

"Applications must be originally written in Objective-C, C, C++, or JavaScript as executed by the iPhone OS WebKit engine, and only code written in C, C++, and Objective-C may compile and directly link against the Documented APIs (e.g., Applications that link to Documented APIs through an intermediary translation or compatibility layer or tool are prohibited)."

A post by Daring Fireball's John Gruber explains the problem, stating: "My reading of this new language is that cross-compilers, such as the Flash-to-iPhone compiler in Adobe's upcoming Flash Professional CS5 release, are prohibited.

"…the language in the agreement doesn't leave much wiggle room for Flash CS5. It could hardly be more clear if they singled out Flash CS5 by name."

Of course, the might of the Apple App Store means that developer disquiet will make very little difference, but it does serve as a reminder that Apple's walled garden is not crumbling.

Via Daring Fireball

Patrick Goss

Patrick Goss is the ex-Editor in Chief of TechRadar. Patrick was a passionate and experienced journalist, and he has been lucky enough to work on some of the finest online properties on the planet, building audiences everywhere and establishing himself at the forefront of digital content.  After a long stint as the boss at TechRadar, Patrick has now moved on to a role with Apple, where he is the Managing Editor for the App Store in the UK.