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Palm webOS 1.2 delayed, iTunes sync back?

updated 11:50 am EDT, Fri September 25, 2009

Leak details Palm webOS 1.2 and iTunes

Palm's webOS 1.2 may not show until next week but could come with iTunes syncing back in place, a supposed leak from a source says. Sprint's own need to test the revamped App Catalog is said to have triggered a short delay and forced Palm to move to 1.2.1 instead. However, it's now said by the PreCentral contact that the software will give the Pre native sync for the first time in iTunes 9.

The slip also provides some clarification of the iTunes sync process and claims that support for Apple's software has never been cause for a delay in webOS updates. Apple's first attempt to break sync was described as simple enough that Palm was able to restore sync in "five minutes" for webOS 1.1 by changing the USB vendor ID to mimic Apple's. For 1.2.1, the effort purportedly took longer but was still limited to about 2.5 hours of total work, though what was involved hasn't been discussed.

Additionally, the same source claims that Palm is "committed" to continuing to restore iTunes sync as long as the amount of time required for patching the feature back in remains reasonable. If true, the company will keep reenabling the feature until the development time surpasses 40 total hours, or about as much as one person's typical work week.

Putting the feature back into place is likely to further escalate the tensions between Apple and Palm. Although Apple hasn't gone so far as to issue a legal challenge to Palm, it has warned of likely incompatibility and, according to the new story, has been implementing tougher measures to block out non-Apple devices in iTunes. Palm has argued that it's providing freedom of choice but has faced criticism from the USB Implementers Forum that its vendor ID change was dishonest.

by MacNN Staff



  1. DanielSw

    Joined: Dec 1969


    If nothing else. . .

    . . . Palm's continued efforts to poach iTunes is bad PR.

    What kind of a company would not only condone but actively work on overriding another company's attempts to limit access? Borderline criminal, at best.

    "Freedom of choice" ?? Bah! That's like a would-be looter complaining that a store's locked door is limiting his freedom of choice.

  1. Parky

    Joined: Dec 1969


    Develop your own software

    Can you see them discussing this.

    "OK lets leech of the back of iTunes as it is cheaper than doing it ourselves"

    If you want to lead the market you have to innovate, NOT steal.

    Comment buried. Show
  1. luckyday

    Joined: Dec 1969


    Borderline criminal?

    Really? Did you actually say that?

    Comment buried. Show
  1. luckyday

    Joined: Dec 1969


    Not a big deal

    Who cares if palm is "leaching" from apple. How is what Apple is doing any different than if Microsoft said that you can only print from MS word if you have a Microsoft approved printer. Or if Apple said only the mighty mouse will work with OSX. Orrrrrr... Microsoft forcing you to use IE. s**** all that corporate restrictive behavior.

    I think you have it backwards. What apple is doing is wrong. Itunes is much more than just a sync solution for ipods. There should be no peripheral restrictions for quasi-core software. Open it up baby! Only benefits the consumer.

  1. nativeNYer

    Joined: Dec 1969


    I guess we know

    ... what Palm intentions are then. This, if true is their answer to the USB Forum. A giant F-YOU actually. Seriously, I hope the USB forum revokes Palm's USB license for continuing to go against the standards boards regulations. I'm not even sure if its possible to have a license revoked like that, but if so, I hope it happens. Palm needs to be put in their place. It isn't their decision to make on how iTunes interoperates with other devices. Apple owns iTunes and has the choice of what it can connect to. Palm continuing to circumvent Apple's restrictions should land them is a huge amount of hot water.

    Not to mention the fact that its a disservice to their Pre customers. Every time Apple releases an update to iTunes they have to hold off on installing for fear it will break iTunes syncing. How is this deemed to make sense to the people at Palm?

  1. elroth

    Joined: Dec 1969


    re: luckyday

    There's so much misinformation about this, and you're helping to spread it.

    There is an approved, legal way to sync media players with iTunes: write an app (or license one from a third party). There are several around, and Creative, Sony and others seem to be able to do this and sync with iTunes just fine. Apple has never tried to stop them.

    What Palm is doing is hacking. It's fooling iTunes into believing that it's connected to an iPod. This violates the rules of the USB forum, and probably violates Apple's patents and copyrights too.

    The story says Palm will stop if it takes 40 hours of work to come up with the next hack. That's interesting because they could probably write their own syncing program in 40 hours.

    Why don't they just do it anyway? Probably because people like you spread their FUD and that gets bad publicity for Apple.

  1. daqman

    Joined: Dec 1969


    Palm should play by the rules.

    There are several parts to this.

    1) There is a legitimate way to sync a device with iTunes but it requires some software effort that Palm isn't prepared to put in for some reason.

    2) Palm is breaking the rules of an established standard by having their device pretend to be something that it isn't.

    3) Apple has invested a LOT of effort into the whole iTunes and iPod experience and deserve to recoup their investment. Apple would be well within their rights to not allow anyone to sync anything other than an iPod with iTunes. Instead Apple DOES allow third party devices to sync with iTunes via the approved method. This is NOT the same as Microsoft who in many cases had NO approved method to interface with their software.

  1. TheBum

    Joined: Dec 1969


    Write your own sync app already, Palm!

    There's absolutely no reason Palm couldn't write a syncing app that uses the exact same media files as iTunes does. Unlike in iPhoto, iTunes accesses music and video files out of regular folders that are fully readable by any app. I see this as just plain laziness on Palm's part.

  1. nnmac123

    Joined: Dec 1969


    Bad Apple

    I bought my music, I should be able to sync with any ipod, zune, or pre I want. I am stealing anything from Apple. It should be enabled in itunes because that is the application I use to manage my music. I can switch to doubletwist or songbird but I'm too lazy to learn a new interface.

  1. luckyday

    Joined: Dec 1969



    FUD = This violates the rules of the USB forum, and probably violates Apple's patents and copyrights too.

    A copyright relates to original works like a novel, movie, song, etc. So I'm not quite sure what you're talking about here. Regarding patents, without getting into the details, its pretty clear there is no patent infringement because apple hasn't sued anyone yet. And we all know how trigger happy Apple is. Not to mention, i doubt apple has a patent over finding a backdoor into itunes! haha.

    You think they can write their own syncing program in 40 hours? Have you ever done any programming before? That's just crazy.

    Im too hungover to respond to the rest. Its all garbage. Apple makes money through the music store, which is massive. Get over this c***. if this was microsoft limiting its software you'd all be going crazy.

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