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Tether Says Apple Pulled iTether App Over Carrier Burden


Tether has issued a statement explaining its interpretation of Apple's removal of the iTether app from the App Store, hours after it went on sale. Apple, which has not had any public comment about the app, explained to Tether that the data use resulting from the app was too burdensome to carrier networks.
Around 12PM EST, Apple called our head office to let us know they were going to go ahead and pull our app iTether from the App Store. They stated it was because the app itself burdens the carrier network, however they offered us no way to remedy the solution… We were very clear when listing the app what the primary function was and they even followed up with several questions and requested a video demo then they approved the application.

We strongly disagree that it burdens a carrier’s network, as from our own data history on more than 500,000 users we know the average user consumes less than 200 MBs of data per month on Tether. In comparison, one TV show streamed from Netflix, an approved Apple App, could easily be in the 300-400 MBs range. Sure, there are some users that will consume way more than the average however that’s the case with any of these types of products.

Our team is very disappointed in Apple’s decision; as we strongly believe we help carriers better monetize their data stream by pushing customers into new data tiers further increasing their bottom-line. It is very anti-competitive to not allow any Tethering application to enter into this space to innovate. Our team has created a lot of innovative solutions for the BlackBerry product, which we were hoping to port over to the iPhone like end-to-end encryption, compression, website filtering and port filtering.

According to Apple, users who purchase iTether before it was pulled will continue to be able to use the product.

Our team is evaluating all of our options… Stay tuned.
Tether's website has been slow and unresponsive since the app launched last night.

Thanks Victor.

Top Rated Comments

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35 months ago
Thats what I dont understand. You can stream Netflix and Pandora all day long but you cant tether. Makes no sense.
Rating: 64 Votes
35 months ago
It's burdensome to the carrier's pocketbooks...
Rating: 35 Votes
35 months ago
"Apple called our head office to let us know they were going to go ahead and pull our app iTether from the App Store"


Sounds like a quote from Office Space. .... Mmmm, yeahhhh, we're gonna have to go ahead and pull your app.
Rating: 34 Votes
35 months ago

All to be expected, except Tether's reaction. Seems like a lot of huff and puff at a house they (Tether) have no right to try and blow down.


I think you've got it all wrong. Tether was up front with Apple about their app (at least they say they were), even answering specific questions about the app. Apple approved it for the app store, but then it gets pulled about a day later.

It seems obvious to me that the carriers didn't like that people were able to tether their computers to their iPhones without paying the carrier's extra fee. Apple caved to the complaints from the carriers!
Rating: 27 Votes
35 months ago
Total agree with the developer on this one.
Rating: 26 Votes
35 months ago

All to be expected, except Tether's reaction. Seems like a lot of huff and puff at a house they (Tether) have no right to try and blow down.


What specifically about Tether's response is it that you find objectionable or unfair?
Rating: 26 Votes
35 months ago
Why do carriers care? If I have say a 1GB per month plan, why does it matter if I use that 1GB over the month on my phone, or in one day (or week) on my computer? 1GB is 1GB, why does it matter how I use it, on which device, or how fast I use it? 1GB is 1GB, and its my 1GB to use.. after all the customer is paying for the 1GB, shouldn't they be able to use it how ever THEY wish?
Rating: 23 Votes
35 months ago
"If your app is rejected, we have a Review Board that you can appeal to. If you run to the press and trash us, it never helps."

From the App store guidelines.
Rating: 23 Votes
35 months ago
The carriers' goal:

$30 / month for "Data package" for your phone.
$5 / month for "Web access" for your phone.
$2 / month for "email access" for your phone.
$10 / month for "Netflix access" for your phone.
$8 / month for "Pandora access" for your phone.
$5 / month access for "Premium web access" (news sites, sports sites, etc) for your phone.
$5 / month for "Someone might be looking at your screen" mult-user access for your phone.
$1 per MB if you actually download anything.
$5 / month for "convenience fee" to provide you with such great service.
$5 / month "advertising recuperation" fee.
$3 / month "I think that lady over there is trying to get a free peek at your screen" fee.

Want to tether?
$20 / month additional "tethering" access fee.
$20 / month additional "just in case" extra GB limit fee.
$5 per day for any client that actually connects to your phone's tethering program.
$5 / month "IP address access fee".
$60 per GB over the limit fee.

But hey, now you get 80,000 FREE "mobile to mobile" minutes per month, instead of just 50,000 free mobile-to-mobile minutes you use to get (but never used in the first place).
Rating: 22 Votes
35 months ago

All to be expected, except Tether's reaction. Seems like a lot of huff and puff at a house they (Tether) have no right to try and blow down.


your comment is fail.

they didn't huff.
they didn't puff.
they didn't (as of yet) try to blow down Steve's house.

they took a risk and made an app.
they played by all the rules and cooperated with "the house".
it got pulled.
they're naturally disappointed.
they issued a very calm, measured response.

what would you have them do differently??? :rolleyes:
Rating: 18 Votes

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