From the mouth of Jobs himself

Steve Jobs has reiterated that you’re renting all $30 million worth of iPhone apps you’ve purchased. Engagdet says,

[he] confirmed the controversial iPhone application kill switch in the event that Apple inadvertently approves a malicious program for distribution. Jobs said, “hopefully we never have to pull that lever, but we would be irresponsible not to have a lever like that to pull.”

He went on to say, “We know you all love to buy anything with our name on it, though, so you should be happy to repurchase anything we decide we don’t want you to have anymore”.

I love to hate the iPhone

I know my opinion on Apple and the iPhone differs from many of my readers, but this is worrisome if you’ve bought an iPhone and mistakenly think you’ve bought an app from the App Store. Engadget | iPhone hacker says the device ‘calls home’ to Apple, allows apps to be remotely disabled

the suggestion that a process of the OS would actively monitor, report on, and possibly deactivate your device’s software is unreasonable, and clearly presents an issue that the company will have to deal with sooner or later.

If you buy something, and the seller can take it back at any time for any reason and not give back your money, you are renting, not buying. Because of the closed and proprietary nature of Apple’s world, if you buy into it, you’re stuck with whatever they want to do to you. Updated to add: Engadget says that the iPhone probably isn’t calling home to disable your apps after all. I still don’t like Apple, and I still don’t trust them any more than I trust Microsoft. But it doesn’t seem like they’re doing anything objectionable here.

The iPhone and the PETA Effect

Gizmodo reports that Defective by Design, an anti-DRM group, is going to clog up the Apple Genius Bar this weekend with people complaining about the restrictive nature of the iPhone. This is an idea (DRM sucks) that I totally support, but a terrible way to protest it. I mean, when I see idiots from PETA dressing up like animals or throwing blood around, it just makes me want to go on the Atkins diet. When I see’s super-obnoxious anti-smoking commercials, I want to buy cigarettes for minors. I support treating animals humanely. I support keeping kids from smoking (And encouraging adults to stop). And I support telling Apple and the rest that they’re a bunch of jerks with their insistence on DRM. But this isn’t the way to do it. The response to bad behavior is not more bad behavior. Apple’s anti-customer policies are not justification to make this much of a nuisance of yourself. Remember, when someone buys an iPhone, they’ve made a decision, based on their knowledge of the product, that the benefits outweigh the drawbacks. For you, they may not. They don’t for me. And really, we all know the only thing that would make me buy an Apple product (Except as gifts for my wife, because she’s great) is if all of you stopped liking them. And yes, DRM is bad for everyone, and everyone who buys DRM-infected content or devices is making it tougher on the rest of us. But this is a free country, and that includes the freedom to make decisions based on your own relative needs and desires. Anyway, not that anyone listens to me, but I urge you to ignore Defective by Design’s request to mess with the Apple Genius Bar. It’s not the right way to protest DRM. I mean, really, does anyone think Apple cares?