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First Open Source iPhone App Killed?

Apple has pulled the popular iPhone application BoxOffice from its store without informing the author or responding to his queries.

Some have speculated that it might be at the behest of the data provider (Fandango) but the author clarified, “i’m in talks with fandango right now, and they’re thrilled with my app”.

Another possibility is that the terms of the iPhone SDK were violated by the publication of the source code for BoxOffice, which necessarily discloses parts of the iPhone API to third parties.

For those wondering if Apple was actually going to enforce the non-open-source aspect of its NDA, this may be the test case that will decide the issue.

Update 2008-10-13: This appears to have been a licensing issue with improper use of data from Rotten Tomatoes. Its owner (now Fox) contacted Apple and Apple ‘fired first and didn’t bother to ask questions’. Apparently through some back door channels and 10 days later the author was able to contact somebody inside Apple and get the issue resolved. By insisting on playing gatekeeper, Apple is going to take blow after blow on these kinds of problem, simply as a matter of percentages. The iPhone App Graveyard will track the drama.