Apple lands banhammer on iFixit for Apple TV teardown

Teardowns have become part and parcel of tech life. Usually they happen after a device becomes available to the public. Sometimes, they happen before, though usually somewhat secretively or with less media buzz. But when you're iFixit, you don't really have that luxury, which now they are finding out the hard way. On its blog, the popular teardown experts have revealed that their Apple developer account has been banned and their app removed from the App Store. All because they were probably way too excited over the Apple TV.

It's in their DNA is iFixit's defense. The situation isn't as clear cut as it may seem at first, which is reflected in the different kinds of comments the incident solicited. The fact of the matter is that Apple has informed iFixit that it violated its terms and conditions for the Apple TV, leading to the banning of the iFixit developer account. Since that is the same account associated with their iFixit app, that had to go too.

Now before you hurriedly jump the gun too, the terms and conditions mentioned here is the NDA that developers usually agree on receiving a pre-release version of a device. For the purpose of development, of course. As such, the Apple TV that iFixit tore down isn't yet the retail version, which has yet to see the light of day. It is a developer model covered by the NDA, which they apparently violated when they made the public teardown.

Some consider the move heavy handed and stifling while others agree that iFixit was technically culpable. We're not sure a teardown does qualify as an action that hinders Apple's operations, but even so, iFixit doesn't really have any recourse if it violated something it agreed to.

IFixit itself perhaps knows it really has no grounds to appeal and is simply moving on from the incident. It's not crying over its lost iOS app either. iFixit is already moving towards obsoleting it in favor of an updated web experience, so the they were headed down that road anyway. It just so happen that Apple beat them to the punch. At least iFixit got their teardown fix first.

SOURCE: iFixit

VIA: MacRumors