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iPhone App is Not Approved, Developer goes to Cydia

umonitor.pngTorrentFreak reports that the iPhone app µMonitor has moved to the Cydia app store after Apple rejected it from its App Store. µMonitor allows the user to remotely monitor and control the popular BitTorrent program µTorrent.

While the app does not itself use the BitTorrent protocol, instead it only interacts remotely with the client which is running on the user’s PC, it is Apple’s policy not to approve applications that may somehow, even if indirectly, be used to infringe upon copyrights. While it is probably no surprise to any one that Apple would choose to ban all BitTorrent apps, rather than simply giving up on the project and moving on, the app’s developer, Claudio, decided to release it on Cydia, an alternative app store that can only be accessed on a jailbroken iPhone, where it continues to actively develop the app.

While the ban on BitTorrent applications comes as no surprise, Apple’s strict policies have also led to the removal of many other apps, such as all Google Voice apps. As more apps are turned down by Apple, it will be interesting to see if other developers begin to take their apps to Cydia and if Cydia will be able to mature into a viable alternative app store, competing with Apple’s own App Store. Like the App Store, Cydia supports both free and paid applications, but applications on Cydia do not have to pass the same strict rules that Apple enforces on its app store. The biggest impediment for users in accessing Cydia is that they must jailbreak their iPhones to do so. While the process is quite simple and quick, it may seem complicated for non-power users and Apple discourages it as well. But if Apple continues to deny users access to the apps they want, it is likely that more people will be turning to alternative app stores, such as Cydia, that do not screen apps so rigorously.

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