• Author arn
  • Posted On2008-10-01 11:01:52
  • News

Apple has announced that they are lifting the iPhone developer non-disclosure agreement.

We have decided to drop the non-disclosure agreement (NDA) for released iPhone software.

We put the NDA in place because the iPhone OS includes many Apple inventions and innovations that we would like to protect, so that others don’t steal our work. It has happened before. While we have filed for hundreds of patents on iPhone technology, the NDA added yet another level of protection. We put it in place as one more way to help protect the iPhone from being ripped off by others.

However, the NDA has created too much of a burden on developers, authors and others interested in helping further the iPhone’s success, so we are dropping it for released software. Developers will receive a new agreement without an NDA covering released software within a week or so. Please note that unreleased software and features will remain under NDA until they are released.

Thanks to everyone who provided us constructive feedback on this matter.

This should come to welcome news to developers who have been limited in their public discussions about iPhone development. This should also pave the way for iPhone developer books which have been on hold due to the NDA. Apple will be publishing a new NDA which still covers unreleased software and features.

  • MilesO'Toole

    Wow... this is pretty major news. Very glad to hear it.

  • MilesO'Toole

    Wow... this is pretty major news. Very glad to hear it.

  • Ryan

    about. dang. time.

  • Ryan

    about. dang. time.

  • Ryan

    Although, I don't buy their "protecting apple" crap. The rejection letters they sent out were covered under the NDA, and there's NOTHING in those that could contain any apple secrets.

    They had the NDA to save face.

  • vandy1997

    Maybe the hit to the stock value made Steve Jobs see that Apple is as vulnerable as all of the other companies. Wake up, stop with the restrictions, and put out the features that users are requesteing (or at least allow others to do it)!

  • Ryan

    Although, I don't buy their "protecting apple" crap. The rejection letters they sent out were covered under the NDA, and there's NOTHING in those that could contain any apple secrets.

    They had the NDA to save face.

  • vandy1997

    Maybe the hit to the stock value made Steve Jobs see that Apple is as vulnerable as all of the other companies. Wake up, stop with the restrictions, and put out the features that users are requesteing (or at least allow others to do it)!

  • Skip

    Helpful to people like me who are way better designers than programmers. I look forward to the inevitable iPhone development books and help websites... ;)

  • Skip

    Helpful to people like me who are way better designers than programmers. I look forward to the inevitable iPhone development books and help websites... ;)

  • http://www.alex-hardy.co.uk Alex

    This is great news. Apple are slowly but surely delivering the iPhone platform we all want. Are you listening Apple? We want more! We want:

    * A crystal-clear, published definition of the acceptance critera for the App store

    * A pre-approval process so that developers can submit a proposal to Apple and be told whether their app will be accepted on principle

    * Apple to quit refusing apps that compete with their functionality. I understand NetShare would have violated their carrier agreements, but PodCaster and MailWrangler should be accepted. Unless of course Apple want to be the subject of an anti-trust suit...

    * Apple to stop acting as judges of usefulness. If I want to waste my money on some useless junk (there's plenty that *did* get accepted) that's my prerogative

    * Apple to stop acting as judges of good taste. I'm over 18 and if I want to play a strip poker game (which I don't) or a mobile Grand Theft Auto (which I don't) then I should be able to. You already have an age verification mechanism in the store - implement it for apps and get out of the way

    * Reviews should be bound to an app version. Developers must be sick and tired of reading reviews whining about bugs that are fixed, or the lack of features that have been added

    * There should be an Apple representative similar to Adobe's John Nack, blogging and responding to the community. This point may be too much to hope for...

  • http://www.alex-hardy.co.uk Alex

    This is great news. Apple are slowly but surely delivering the iPhone platform we all want. Are you listening Apple? We want more! We want:

    * A crystal-clear, published definition of the acceptance critera for the App store

    * A pre-approval process so that developers can submit a proposal to Apple and be told whether their app will be accepted on principle

    * Apple to quit refusing apps that compete with their functionality. I understand NetShare would have violated their carrier agreements, but PodCaster and MailWrangler should be accepted. Unless of course Apple want to be the subject of an anti-trust suit...

    * Apple to stop acting as judges of usefulness. If I want to waste my money on some useless junk (there's plenty that *did* get accepted) that's my prerogative

    * Apple to stop acting as judges of good taste. I'm over 18 and if I want to play a strip poker game (which I don't) or a mobile Grand Theft Auto (which I don't) then I should be able to. You already have an age verification mechanism in the store - implement it for apps and get out of the way

    * Reviews should be bound to an app version. Developers must be sick and tired of reading reviews whining about bugs that are fixed, or the lack of features that have been added

    * There should be an Apple representative similar to Adobe's John Nack, blogging and responding to the community. This point may be too much to hope for...

  • Ryan

    The best thing for iPhone users would be some REAL competition from android. Some awesome phone designs, some apps that apple won't approve, things like that. Force apple's hand!

  • Ryan

    The best thing for iPhone users would be some REAL competition from android. Some awesome phone designs, some apps that apple won't approve, things like that. Force apple's hand!

  • Capone

    @Skip:

    Yeah, I think the same. Until now only few tutorials could be found on the internet. Also a few books on iPhone-SDK programming are ready for release, but can only be pre-ordered at the moment (due to the NDA). Maybe that changes now.

  • Capone

    @Skip:

    Yeah, I think the same. Until now only few tutorials could be found on the internet. Also a few books on iPhone-SDK programming are ready for release, but can only be pre-ordered at the moment (due to the NDA). Maybe that changes now.

  • Podzoe

    To me this seems like they are just trying to look good without having to lose anything. The NDA doesn't cover 'released' software anymore. So, I release a new App, and I can now talk about it. Woot! I unfortunately still can't talk about anything during its development, nor anything about the tools, nor anything about whether a bug is in my code or Apple's code or how to do something.

  • Podzoe

    To me this seems like they are just trying to look good without having to lose anything. The NDA doesn't cover 'released' software anymore. So, I release a new App, and I can now talk about it. Woot! I unfortunately still can't talk about anything during its development, nor anything about the tools, nor anything about whether a bug is in my code or Apple's code or how to do something.

  • http://www.alex-hardy.co.uk Alex

    @Podzoe I think you have misunderstood. They mean release versions of the iPhone software. Developers can (and always have) discuss their pre-release apps. They can now talk openly about programming iPhone in the way you describe.

    What they presumably *can't* do is discuss programming features of iPhone that have not been released. For instance, a new API in iPhone OS 2.2.

    As a developer, I think this is reasonable. It's worth bearing in mind that features change or are removed entirely prior to a software release. I wouldn't want to write a book with inaccuracies, or ship an app which was dependent on deprecated code...

  • http://www.alex-hardy.co.uk Alex

    @Podzoe I think you have misunderstood. They mean release versions of the iPhone software. Developers can (and always have) discuss their pre-release apps. They can now talk openly about programming iPhone in the way you describe.

    What they presumably *can't* do is discuss programming features of iPhone that have not been released. For instance, a new API in iPhone OS 2.2.

    As a developer, I think this is reasonable. It's worth bearing in mind that features change or are removed entirely prior to a software release. I wouldn't want to write a book with inaccuracies, or ship an app which was dependent on deprecated code...

  • Tulse

    Podzoe, the "unreleased" software covered is Apple software, not a developer's. In other words, developers can talk about the currently released SDK, but not about any unreleased version of the SDK that they may have access to.

  • Tulse

    Podzoe, the "unreleased" software covered is Apple software, not a developer's. In other words, developers can talk about the currently released SDK, but not about any unreleased version of the SDK that they may have access to.

  • http://www.jordibares.co.uk Jordi Bares

    This is probably the very key push to the community so it grows in a healthy manner. Can't wait to see the books on the stores.

    Thanks

  • http://www.jordibares.co.uk Jordi Bares

    This is probably the very key push to the community so it grows in a healthy manner. Can't wait to see the books on the stores.

    Thanks

  • Josh

    Small typo at the end... old = hold

  • Josh

    Small typo at the end... old = hold

  • Dudehuge

    great news for devs

  • Dudehuge

    great news for devs