iTether iPhone App Gets Removed from the App Store

Just a couple of days ago a new app was approved by Apple for launch. The new app called iTether, allowed PC and Mac users to connect up to the internet and share the connection from the iPhone. Although Tether were open and honest about the app and even provided a video demonstration at the request of Apple, Apple has now removed the app from the store.

Apple contacted the developers yesterday to inform them that the app was removed from the app store. The reason was that it would cause a burden on carrier networks in the US.

Around 12PM EST, Apple called our head office to let us know they were going to go ahead and pull our app iTether from the App Store. They stated it was because the app itself burdens the carrier network, however they offered us no way to remedy the solution… We were very clear when listing the app what the primary function was and they even followed up with several questions and requested a video demo then they approved the application.

We strongly disagree that it burdens a carrier’s network, as from our own data history on more than 500,000 users we know the average user consumes less than 200 MBs of data per month on Tether. In comparison, one TV show streamed from Netflix, an approved Apple App, could easily be in the 300-400 MBs range. Sure, there are some users that will consume way more than the average however that’s the case with any of these types of products.

Our team is very disappointed in Apple’s decision; as we strongly believe we help carriers better monetize their data stream by pushing customers into new data tiers further increasing their bottom-line. It is very anti-competitive to not allow any Tethering application to enter into this space to innovate. Our team has created a lot of innovative solutions for the BlackBerry product, which we were hoping to port over to the iPhone like end-to-end encryption, compression, website filtering and port filtering.

According to Apple, users who purchase iTether before it was pulled will continue to be able to use the product.

Our team is evaluating all of our options… Stay tuned.

The app can still be used by those who have already downloaded it, but for now (or for good) the app is not available to purchase. Also, now that the app is banned there will be no further updates to the app unless Tether can get the decision overturned.

Tether also points out that other apps use far more data such as official streaming apps. We doubt this will change things though. We are just surprised that Apple allowed it in the first place. Chances are, the app will be made available on a repository on Cydia though, so you might still be in luck if you want to purchase it and don’t mind jailbreaking.

Source 1,2

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