Mon, May 3rd 2010 2:49pm
The FTC and the DOJ are reportedly holding talks over which group will launch an antitrust inquiry into Apple's policies regarding app development for the iPhone and iPad. Apple recently made a change to the terms of its iPhone SDK, barring developers from using third-party development tools. Apple claims it did this to ensure that iPhone apps are of the highest quality, but the real reason appears to be to push developers to only develop for the iPhone, and not other rival platforms. The behavior may be as annoying as it is unsurprising, but it's hard to see how this warrants antitrust action and government intervention. Apple isn't restricting access to that market completely, they're just forcing developers to use certain tools in order to participate in it. While Apple is trying to throw its weight around for its own benefit, what its doing may not necessarily be illegal -- but that doesn't mean it's a good idea either. This policy seems likely to fail in the marketplace more quickly than any resolution through government intervention could take effect.
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