Thursday, October 1, 2009

USB Implementers Forum Backs Apple

In a move likely to surprise and anger consumer advocates, Apple's strategy to block software interoperability with third-party hardware by sniffing for manufacturer codes has been supported by the USB-IF, which apparently chastised Palm for spoofing Apple's vendor ID in a bid to provide an iTunes-friendly competitor to Apple hardware.

On the one hand, spoofing a competitor's product clearly violates the rules governing USB implementations ... but on the other hand there are consumer protection concerns in refusing to allow apparently-compatible hardware to communicate effectively with users' legitimately-installed software.

This one might end up in arbitration (if the agreements require it) or the courts; Palm wants to synch with Apple's software, and being denied synch puts it at competitive disadvantage on Apple's platform.

On the other hand ... how much sales volume was Palm really getting on Apple platforms?

UPDATE: New WebOS update re-enables sync broken by recent iTunes updates.

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