The Electronic Frontier Foundation is going Android-only with its new app, saying it can’t get on board with the Apple Developer Agreement.
The organization is one of the top groups in pushing for user privacy and free expression online. Its new app, which you can grab from the Google Play Store, sends you occasional alerts about issues the EFF is taking on, with links for you to share via social media.
The EFF outlines its objections to Apple’s rules in a blog post, taking issue with a ban on “public statements” about the developer agreement (even though it’s not secret), disallowing apps built with Apple’s SDK to be released on other platforms, and a restriction on jailbreaking iOS devices.
Many other developers probably take issue with some provisions, though they often don’t have the luxury of ignoring one of the two major mobile operating systems, especially if they’re trying to turn a profit.
The story behind the story: While Apple’s App Store has been spectacularly successful, it’s been dogged by criticism over its developer rules. Apple must approve each new app and update before going live in the App Store, even those for minor bug or security fixes. Apple argues that it makes the App Store better for you since it has a heavier hand in curating its apps. The Google Play Store doesn’t have a similar approval process, though of course that means from time to time more malware or other nefarious apps sneak in.