Can’t Wait for iOS 6? Renegade Developers Trade Access for Cash
Every year, Apple’s keynotes hype the latest and greatest iOS software, receive unprecedented media coverage, and tout hundreds of new features on the Apple homepage. But then, like an evil Santa Claus, Apple asks their most passionate fans to wait months to play with the new toys. This year, like the year before, they didn’t announce a release date, promising only sometime “this fall.”
If you’re a diehard Apple fan that desperately wants to run a buggy beta version of iOS 6 right now, your only legal option is to shell out the $99 to join the iOS Developer Program. Affordable for a developer, the barrier to entry is high enough to keep out casual fans from accidentally bricking their phones and cluttering up the Genius Bar.
But over the last couple years, a cottage industry’s popped up around illicit UDID activations — startups exploiting Apple’s Developer Program to sell access to prerelease iOS software, usually for less than $10 per device. The craziest thing? Apple doesn’t seem to care.
Perhaps the number of people using these services is small enough for Apple to not have to worry about it. It seems that Apple could shut these services down immediately if they wanted to - they clearly violate the terms of the Apple Developer’s agreement and are exploiting their access to beta software for profit. I would imagine that these types of services have only a small window of a month or two each year where they can actually make any money, so they may be small enough to fly under the radar, so to speak. That may change if Apple takes a look at this article.