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Last week, my final link used iDOS 2 to install Windows 3.1 on your iPad. I’m sure it wasn’t my link that focused Apple’s attention on the app. Many blogs and podcasts discussed it. Unfortunately, Apple has now told the developer to make fundamental changes within 14 days, or they’ll remove it from the App Store.

I’ve also had this article from the Panic blog in my saved links for a while. It’s the story of why their editor, Nova, won’t come to iPad as they initially said it would. Predictably, it’s also due to the same App Store rules.

The new iPad Pro is an incredible device. It has the M1 chip, an XDR screen, keyboard, trackpad, touch, and pen input, and it’s all wrapped up in what I think is the most beautiful industrial design coming out of Apple today.

My iPad is more than four years old now, and even though it still works well, it’s getting to the age where I would typically think about replacing it. But while I’ve added the new iPad Pro to my shopping basket several times, I haven’t checked out, and I don’t think I will.

The iPad can do many great things, but there’s no doubt that the App Store rules hold it back from fulfilling its potential. That said, I can’t see Apple wanting to give an inch on rules that would weaken the platform’s security. They’ve fought hard to create trust in iOS, and the tight restrictions on what developers can do partially protect the platform’s security.

You could make a convincing argument that allowing a different web rendering engine, JavaScript parser, or allowing emulation wouldn’t affect security much. But I don’t think you could say it wouldn’t affect it at all.

The complexity comes when the same restrictions also benefit Apple in so many other ways than security, and that’s at the heart of so many of their current legal issues.

I’d love to see a more capable iPadOS. I want to see a full-featured iPad version of Nova, and running Windows 3.1 on an iPad for a few minutes is harmless fun. But I also highly value the trust that the protected environment has helped create. Changing these rules for everyone’s benefit is a challenging decision that I’m glad no one is asking me to make.

I still think that despite all their bias, Apple is in the best position to make changes to these rules. I just can’t see them doing that voluntarily. There’s too much at stake. Because of that, it might be a judge who gets to make that final decision, which scares me a little.

I’ve written on this topic a few times recently but never quite managed to get my thoughts down as clearly as it feels like I have this time. I hope you’ll forgive the repetition!

Dave Verwer

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Senior iOS Engineer @ img.ly – We are that groundbreaking technology provider whose work you came across without knowing it. Bet? It's on! You will be working with us on our flagship products PhotoEditor SDK and VideoEditor SDK, empowering developers at 500+ startups, government & Fortune 500 businesses. You decide where you work best: we tackle the creative world entirely remotely while keeping our team strong and connected. – Remote

iOS Engineers at Multiple Levels @ Turo – Help us build product features that delight guests who book vehicles on our platform and enable hosts with the tools they need to manage their fleet. The iOS team is actively transitioning our iOS codebase from Objective-C to Swift, and we’re learning SwiftUI together–in labs–as we migrate our internal, watchOS, and tvOS apps. It’s really an exciting time to be an Apple-centric engineer at Turo. – San Francisco CA

Senior iOS SDK Architect @ Stream – Stream, a high-growth startup focused on Chat and Feeds, is hiring a Senior iOS SDK Architect to help build the future of their native iOS SDK. Join the team! – Remote, Boulder CO, or Amsterdam


Are you looking for a new challenge? There's something new coming for iOS Dev Jobs, and it's coming soon! I'm quite excited. 🤪

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I’d love to thank this week’s Patreon supporters. Frank Courville, Kevin Sliech, Vanderlei Martinelli, Runway, and Peter Suwara!

Thanks to you all. In fact, thanks to everyone who continues to support what I’m doing here, either through Patreon or just by continuing to read the words that I write! ❤️

And finally...

What do you mean, "Why does it have a unicorn horn?" Did you specify that it shouldn't have one? 😂