Saturday, September 12, 2009

Apple Prevents the Palm Pre from iTunes

Apple has just fired another salvo in its battle with Palm, by preventing the Pre phone from synchronizing with iTunes 9.

This is the second time recently that Apple has deliberately prevented the Pre from connecting to its video and music organization and sales application. In July, iTunes 8.2.1 prevented non-Apple devices from connecting to iTunes by checking the USB Vendor ID and blocking any device that did not use the Apple ID.

Palm followed this up with an update of its own that fixed the issue and made its phones compatible with iTunes again by altering the USB Vendor ID to match Apple's.

It is not just Palm that Apple seems to object to. Updates to iTunes, often break compatibility with other iTunes-compatible devices, such as the free NAS operating system FreeNAS that has a built-in music server.

There is no explanation yet as to how Apple is blocking devices with iTunes 9, but any changes must be deliberately designed so as ensure that iPhones and iPods continue to synchronize without problem.

It is hard to see how Apple has continued and deliberate attack on any device that is not made by Apple can be seen as anything other than anti-competitive. In my opinion it is about time that the European Commission turned its focus to Apple and forced it to make iTunes compatible with third party.

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