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Unauthorized App Store Cydia Sues Apple for Anticompetitive Behavior

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Original poster
Apr 12, 2001
51,482
13,110


Back in 2008, Jay Freeman first released Cydia as an app store designed for the iPhone, offering apps a few months before Apple had its own App Store. Since then, Cydia has served as an app repository for jailbroken iPhones and iPads, making it easy to install unauthorized software on compatible devices.


Now Cydia is joining a growing cadre of developers accusing Apple of anticompetitive behavior, reports The Washington Post. Cydia on Thursday sued Apple, accusing the company of using anticompetitive tactics to "nearly destroy Cydia" ahead of the App Store launch, which Cydia's lawyers say has a monopoly over software distribution on iOS devices.

According to Cydia, if Apple did not have an "illegal monopoly" over iOS app distribution, users would be able to choose "how and where to locate and obtain iOS apps," and developers would also have alternate distribution methods.

Apple spokesperson Fred Sainz told The Washington Post that Apple will review the lawsuit and that Apple is not a monopoly because it faces competition from Android. Apple also must maintain control over the way software is installed on the iPhone to prevent customers from accidentally downloading viruses and malware, which iPhones would be more susceptible to with a third-party App Store.

The App Store is the only authorized way to install apps on an iPhone or iPad, with more than 1.8 million apps available worldwide. Over 28 million developers around the world use the App Store to distribute apps, and Apple earns somewhere around $15 billion in revenue from the App Store each year. Apple has a dedicated App Store review team that reviews every app submitted to the store, along with guidelines that developers have to follow.

Before the App Store, though, there was Cydia. Jay Freeman told The Washington Post that he developed Cydia as a way to make it easy for customers to jailbreak their iPhones and install new software to support features created by developers who wanted to make apps and new functions for the original iPhone.

According to his estimations, more than half of early iPhone customers were jailbreaking their iPhones to use Cydia, and in 2010, 4.5 million people were searching for apps weekly. By then, Apple had come out with its own App Store and started making it harder to jailbreak new iPhones, and over the years, also added features that were previously only available through Cydia, such as the Control Center.

Freeman claims that the risks of jailbreaking are "overblown" and are similar to downloading software from a PC. "Morally speaking, it's your phone and you should be able to do whatever you want with it," he said. The lawsuit claims that Apple used "coercive" terms to prevent customers from using Cydia, and as security ramped up, Cydia's business waned.

Cydia lawyer Stephen Swedlow says that the "legal climate" has been changing, which makes it the ideal time to file against Apple. Cydia is the "perfect claimant" for an antitrust case given that it has an app store that's an alternative to Apple's own offering. If the suit is successful, Cydia plans to once again compete with Apple, but without the need for jailbreaking.

Article Link: Unauthorized App Store Cydia Sues Apple for Anticompetitive Behavior
 

contacos

macrumors 6502a
Nov 11, 2020
501
1,211
Mexico City living in Berlin
How dare they not allow Cydia and its ability to install pirated software!

for shame!

to be fair, it doesn’t offer pirated apps by default. It’s the user that has to add illegal repos manually. Back in the day it was great to obtain tweaks, but Apple has copied most of them by now so there isn’t much need to JB, at least for me, anymore
 
Comment

GizmoDVD

macrumors 68000
Oct 11, 2008
1,990
2,012
SoCal
to be fair, it doesn’t offer pirated apps by default. It’s the user that has to add illegal repos manually. Back in the day it was great to obtain tweaks, but Apple has copied most of them by now so there isn’t much need to JB, at least for me, anymore

which is why. 12 years later, they are trying to sue. No need for Cydia much nowadays.
 
Comment

Webster's Mac

macrumors 6502
Dec 18, 2016
284
224


Back in 2008, Jay Freeman first released Cydia as an app store designed for the iPhone, offering apps a few months before Apple had its own App Store. Since then, Cydia has served as an app repository for jailbroken iPhones and iPads, making it easy to install unauthorized software on compatible devices.


Now Cydia is joining a growing cadre of developers accusing Apple of anticompetitive behavior, reports The Washington Post. Cydia on Thursday sued Apple, accusing the company of using anticompetitive tactics to "nearly destroy Cydia" ahead of the App Store launch, which Cydia's lawyers say has a monopoly over software distribution on iOS devices.

According to Cydia, if Apple did not have an "illegal monopoly" over iOS app distribution, users would be able to choose "how and where to locate and obtain iOS apps," and developers would also have alternate distribution methods.

Apple spokesperson Fred Sainz told The Washington Post that Apple will review the lawsuit and that Apple is not a monopoly because it faces competition from Android. Apple also must maintain control over the way software is installed on the iPhone to prevent customers from accidentally downloading viruses and malware, which iPhones would be more susceptible to with a third-party App Store.

The App Store is the only authorized way to install apps on an iPhone or iPad, with more than 1.8 million apps available worldwide. Over 28 million developers around the world use the App Store to distribute apps, and Apple earns somewhere around $15 billion in revenue from the App Store each year. Apple has a dedicated App Store review team that reviews every app submitted to the store, along with guidelines that developers have to follow.

Before the App Store, though, there was Cydia. Jay Freeman told The Washington Post that he developed Cydia as a way to make it easy for customers to jailbreak their iPhones and install new software to support features created by developers who wanted to make apps and new functions for the original iPhone.

According to his estimations, more than half of early iPhone customers were jailbreaking their iPhones to use Cydia, and in 2010, 4.5 million people were searching for apps weekly. By then, Apple had come out with its own App Store and started making it harder to jailbreak new iPhones, and over the years, also added features that were previously only available through Cydia, such as the Control Center.

Freeman claims that the risks of jailbreaking are "overblown" and are similar to downloading software from a PC. "Morally speaking, it's your phone and you should be able to do whatever you want with it," he said. The lawsuit claims that Apple used "coercive" terms to prevent customers from using Cydia, and as security ramped up, Cydia's business waned.

Cydia lawyer Stephen Swedlow says that the "legal climate" has been changing, which makes it the ideal time to file against Apple. Cydia is the "perfect claimant" for an antitrust case given that it has an app store that's an alternative to Apple's own offering. If the suit is successful, Cydia plans to once again compete with Apple, but without the need for jailbreaking.

Article Link: Unauthorized App Store Cydia Sues Apple for Anticompetitive Behavior

It's Apple's platform. What do these people not understand?
 
Comment

phenste

macrumors regular
Sep 16, 2012
167
564
Ahh, the days of Cydia—I do miss them, but I got out of the jailbreaking game a few years back.

Anyway. I really doubt this gains any traction as they’ve been operating the way they have for the last 12 years (since the App Store was created). Lots of pirated software (allowed through repos added by users themselves rather than Cydia, but)…don’t need to say much more.
 
Comment

LeadingHeat

macrumors 6502
Oct 3, 2015
439
1,073
Lol I can see where they’re coming from, but I honestly thought Cydia died like 7 years ago. JBing was great in the early days (like enabling video recording on an iPhone 3G that could only take pictures) or those fancy whooshing transitions when swiping to another Home Screen. I admit a lot of the “tweaks” that I had installed did get eventually baked into iOS, but they IMO were 1000% more polished and worked much better when Apple implemented them.

I for one would hate to have my phone open to the cesspool of malware and piracy app repos on Cydia. (Isn’t there another “App Store” for jailbreaking now too, not just Cydia?)
 
Comment

Cosmosent

macrumors 68000
Apr 20, 2016
1,672
1,807
La Jolla, CA
One of the main problems is that Apple thinks they are selling ALL of us a "Managed" Device !

They don't think we actually own what we purchase !

That's the crux of it !

Throttling Perf is just one example of it.

Limiting what apps a User can OR cannot install is clearly another.

Cook should simply Drop the Apple Tax to 15% across the Board, with NO restrictions & NO thresholds !
 
Comment

williamyx

macrumors member
Jul 6, 2020
35
50
Mixed feelings. On one hand, I hate Apple's heavy handedness with the app store, but on the other this invites a whole lot of complexity with distribution (e.g. install the Epic Games App store to download fortnite yadda yadda yadda) and a massive attack surface for malware
 
Comment

mubert

macrumors newbie
Aug 2, 2011
14
35
How dare they not allow Cydia and its ability to install pirated software!

for shame!
  1. Cydia doesn't offer pirated software. A user has to take the step of adding an unofficial illegal repository. By your logic, Chrome is responsible for piracy because you can point it to The Pirate Bay.
  2. The only reason piracy is even possible on Cydia is that Apple forces it to be! By refusing to sign Cydia, Apple makes jailbreaking a prerequisite to install Cydia. If Apple allowed other app stores and opened up a means for third party software to install apps, you wouldn't be able to pirate on Cydia.
But keep drinking the kool-aid, for whatever reason you do.
 
Comment

spazzcat

macrumors 68030
Jun 29, 2007
2,826
1,686
One of the main problems is that Apple thinks they are selling ALL of us a "Managed" Device !

They don't think we actually own what we purchase !

That's the crux of it !

Throttling Perf is just one example of it.

Limiting what apps a User can OR cannot install is clearly another.

Cook should simply Drop the Apple Tax to 15% across the Board, with NO restrictions & NO thresholds !
You don't own the software on the device...

Edit: I love people disagreeing with this... When you turn on the phone you saying you agree to the software license a.k.a. EULA... People disagreeing with this should read it...
 
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