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Author Topic: The Demise of BitPak  (Read 7631 times)
DeathAndTaxes
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June 01, 2012, 05:28:11 PM
 #21

"Market share? What's that?

What do you mean?


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June 01, 2012, 05:30:04 PM
 #22

"Market share? What's that?

What do you mean?  Android is doing amazingly well in marketshare.  It essentially caught up to Apple despite a 5 year headstart and competitors RIMM, Palm, and Windows mobile dead or dying.
Second isn't quite like first. Unfortunately the "Jesus phone" has a cult following that will be difficult to actually uproot.

EDIT: Nice edit, I see the graph now. Wow, it's farther along than I thought it was, and hopefully that trend continues.

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June 01, 2012, 05:34:17 PM
 #23

Yeah Apple just has this perception that it is "#1" because it is a single company w/ single product line.  There are for example more "iPhone 4" than any individual Android product.  However as a platform Android has completely anhilated iOS early mover advantage.  Not only has it surpassed iOS it continues to grow faster qtr over qtr and year over year so it is just pulling further and further ahead.  The last qtr that iOS outsold Android was Q4 ... 2009. Smiley



Having just bought a Samsung Galaxy Nexus I have to say that the new version of Android OS is the first one that really closes the gap with iOS.  It is intuitive, polished, and responsive.  No longer the "cheaper alternative" it is a rockstar.  The Galaxy Nexus has NFC hardware and the blockchain.info wallet already supports it.  No need for QR codes to transfer funds.  Unlocked with no contract and latest hardware, and an open platform.  Hard to beat.
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June 01, 2012, 05:50:58 PM
 #24

Why not start a separate Android vs iPhone debate thread I can more easily ignore?

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June 01, 2012, 06:36:50 PM
 #25

Why not start a separate Android vs iPhone debate thread I can more easily ignore?

There was no debate.  Still the ignore button is over there on there on the left your highness.
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June 01, 2012, 06:47:41 PM
 #26

Why not start a separate Android vs iPhone debate thread I can more easily ignore?

There was no debate.  Still the ignore button is over there on there on the left your highness.
On a more serious note, I think this issue will become moot once the mobile browsers all support the media access APIs (http://dev.w3.org/2011/webrtc/editor/getusermedia.html).  There won't be a need for native apps on either iPhone or Android and nobody's approval necessary.

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June 01, 2012, 10:26:51 PM
 #27

There are two issues here:

The first is that Apple does have the right, as does any retailer to decide if they wish to carry a product in their store. This in itself is not objectionable, what makes the situation highly objectionable in the Apple case is that Apple uses DRM to prevent an application that is not obtained from their store from being installed on devices they have already sold to end users. This turns the normal actions of a retailer in choosing to carry a product or not into an act of censorship. Furthermore in many situations regardless of whether Apple chooses to approve or to not approve an application, Apple will always be in the wrong. This by the way does not apply only to Apple it  equally applies for example to Microsoft’s Windows 8 on ARM or to a locked game console for example.

The second is very specific to Bitcoin and is in fact a very critical threat to the viability of Bitcoin. The security and viability of Bitcoin is totally dependent on the complete control of computers and devices by their respective owners. If one allows a situation where a single corporation or a group of corporations can control a majority of nodes or a majority of the hashing power, by the use of DRM locked computers or devices as is currently the case with IOS, then virtually every kind of attack including double spend attacks is possible against the Bitcoin network either by the corporation(s) involved,  by a government or as a result of malware in the “walled garden”. The key here is not the complete elimination of “walled gardens” but rather that they be prevented from having a majority market share.

It is therefore critical that in order for Bitcoin to be viable “walled garden” business models such as is the case with Apple's IOS must either fail or be at least prevented from reaching a majority market share.

So what is the solution? In the case of iPhones it is very simple jail breaking. This, for smart phones, is now legal in the Unites States thanks to the efforts of the EFF among others. One simply needs to accept the fact that Bitcoin is fundamentally incompatible with IOS unless the IOS device is jail broken.

My suggestion to the OP here is very simple. Release the software under either the GPL v3 or the AGPL v3 so that it can be distributed for jail broken iPhones via the Cydia store http://cydia.saurik.com/ for example. I am suggesting GPL v3 or AGPL v3 because of the strong anti Tivoization provisions in these licenses that will keep the software out of the Apple store and similar “walled gardens” such as the one planned by Microsoft. If Apple at a subsequent date changes its mind the OP can then, in addition to the GPL v3 or AGPL v3, license his software under a propriety license for distribution through the Apple store for a royalty.  This has the added benefit to the Bitcoin network of providing a financial incentive to jailbreak iPhones by in effect “taxing” the walls of the “walled garden”.

Concerned that blockchain bloat will lead to centralization? Storing less than 4 GB of data once required the budget of a superpower and a warehouse full of punched cards. https://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/8/87/IBM_card_storage.NARA.jpg https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Punched_card
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June 01, 2012, 10:53:43 PM
 #28

I hope the market will speak and these platforms are forced to open up to alternative app stores.  If I'm not mistaken, even Android phones are locked by carriers into walled gardens for their apps (mostly because carriers want to charge extra for tethering).  Fortunately it's pretty trivial to unlock or jailbreak these devices (I wouldn't buy any device that I couldn't jailbreak).

What I would like to see is an app store that actually did review and approve apps, but that the criteria is solely that the app is relatively bug free and free of viruses, spyware or malware.  I would pay a premium to buy apps in such an app store.  I'm hoping that maybe Cydia or someone like them figures this out and starts such a premium app store.  Then I hope they make enough money doing it that they can sue Apple and the others to open up their platforms for alternative app stores.

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June 01, 2012, 11:31:54 PM
 #29

I hope the market will speak and these platforms are forced to open up to alternative app stores.  If I'm not mistaken, even Android phones are locked by carriers into walled gardens for their apps (mostly because carriers want to charge extra for tethering).  Fortunately it's pretty trivial to unlock or jailbreak these devices (I wouldn't buy any device that I couldn't jailbreak).

What I would like to see is an app store that actually did review and approve apps, but that the criteria is solely that the app is relatively bug free and free of viruses, spyware or malware.  I would pay a premium to buy apps in such an app store.  I'm hoping that maybe Cydia or someone like them figures this out and starts such a premium app store.  Then I hope they make enough money doing it that they can sue Apple and the others to open up their platforms for alternative app stores.

The carrier argument used to be a case for “walled gardens” as recently as two years ago but not anymore. This has been the result of 3G+ networks and simply that many of the carriers have grown up and recognize that tethering data is a product they can sell and make money from. I am not saying that it is not possible to still find a dinosaur carrier however who only allows “walled gardens” on their network but they can be avoided in the marketplace.

I regularly use my Android phone as a wireless hotspot included in my plan and did not even need to root or unlock my phone. This allows me to “tether” any device that has wireless g. Ironically I could even “tether” an iPad if I so desired. The carrier by the way markets this as a feature. Also I can install applications from out side the Android market without any problems. This is all on a phone obtained from a carrier that has not been unlocked or rooted. Two years ago the same Telco would have wanted an arm and a leg for “tethering”. I remember this because I signed up for the plan so soon after the change in policy that the store employees were not even aware of it at the time.

I do agree that there is place for app stores that have clearly defined quality guidelines. The key here is to allow competition and the let free market do its job. I also do believe that the market will force the “walled gardens” open or punish those that wish to keep them closed nevertheless it is important for the Bitcoin community to remain vigilant.

By the way. This very same carrier will sell you today an iPhone all locked up of course.

Concerned that blockchain bloat will lead to centralization? Storing less than 4 GB of data once required the budget of a superpower and a warehouse full of punched cards. https://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/8/87/IBM_card_storage.NARA.jpg https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Punched_card
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e-ducat.fr


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June 02, 2012, 02:05:07 PM
 #30

There are two issues here:
The first is that Apple does have the right, as does any retailer to decide if they wish to carry a product in their store.

This is highly objectionable: if one is equipped with an IOS smartphone, the appstore becomes the only store one has access to unless one replaces it (people without computer skills will NOT jailbreak it). That's a high exit cost. Similar exit costs in retail are nowhere to be found.
 
Combined with the fact that Apple as a company is commanding the majority market share in smartphones (even if android surpasses iOS in OS market share) , that gives enough reasons to ask Apple to be specific as to why they reject a bitcoin app, since the Apple guidelines are not specific.

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1ngldh


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June 02, 2012, 02:10:21 PM
 #31

What we need is an iOS virus that does nothing more than automatically install an over-the-air update that jailbreaks the phone for all the noobs that don't know how. Cheesy

Now all the sudden, every single iphone on the planet is out of warranty, and apple will have to change that policy quick! Grin

Seriously though, it's too bad there isn't a simpler way to jailbreak the phones.

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June 02, 2012, 06:37:28 PM
 #32

There are two issues here:
The first is that Apple does have the right, as does any retailer to decide if they wish to carry a product in their store. This in itself is not objectionable, what makes the situation highly objectionable in the Apple case is that Apple uses DRM to prevent an application that is not obtained from their store from being installed on devices they have already sold to end users. This turns the normal actions of a retailer in choosing to carry a product or not into an act of censorship. Furthermore in many situations regardless of whether Apple chooses to approve or to not approve an application, Apple will always be in the wrong. This by the way does not apply only to Apple it  equally applies for example to Microsoft’s Windows 8 on ARM or to a locked game console for example.



This is highly objectionable: if one is equipped with an IOS smartphone, the appstore becomes the only store one has access to unless one replaces it (people without computer skills will NOT jailbreak it). That's a high exit cost. Similar exit costs in retail are nowhere to be found.
 
Combined with the fact that Apple as a company is commanding the majority market share in smartphones (even if android surpasses iOS in OS market share) , that gives enough reasons to ask Apple to be specific as to why they reject a bitcoin app, since the Apple guidelines are not specific.

Bold added to place quote back in context.

Jailbreak the iPhone! If one does not have the skills then one pays someone who does to do it. Is Apple accountable here? Of course it is; however arguing whether on not an application should be in the appstore plays right into Apple's hands. The focus needs to be on the DRM and lockdown that prevents the end user from obtaining an app from another source.

Consumers also need to be accountable here. If one chooses to buy a DRM laden locked device then one must also accept the consequences of that choice.

Now to help lower the exit cost here are some resources (No warranties of course):

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/IOS_jailbreaking

http://www.redmondpie.com/jailbreak-5.1.1-untethered-iphone-4s-ipad-3-ipod-touch-and-more-using-absinthe-2.0-video-tutorial/
http://www.ijailbreak4s.com/
http://www.ijailbreak.com/how-to-jailbreak/

and to get a small sample of what you missing (it is not just Bitcoin)  here is another resource

http://www.cultofmac.com/141796/the-best-jailbreak-apps-for-the-iphone-4s/

Finally one way to learn about this issue to to enter "Apple Censorship" into a major search engine.

Concerned that blockchain bloat will lead to centralization? Storing less than 4 GB of data once required the budget of a superpower and a warehouse full of punched cards. https://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/8/87/IBM_card_storage.NARA.jpg https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Punched_card
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June 02, 2012, 09:16:54 PM
 #33

Buy a Galaxy S III or a HTC One X instead of messing with jailbreak, itunes and so much fail
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June 02, 2012, 09:40:38 PM
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It's hilarious that Apple portrayed itself in advertisements for years as the young rebel next to the staid IBM PC (for example, see this photo: http://wpcdn2.padgadget.com/wp-content/uploads/2011/08/ipvpc.jpg).  Now, Apple is the establishment figure and Google/Android/Linux (and PC hardware upon which you can install any OS) is the young rebel. 



Even worse, their arch 'nemesis' Bill Gates has been using his billions to eradicate polio and other disease around the world for free while Apple continues to employ child labor and generally be an evil corporation

Can't you just host the app outside the apple store? Or would they shut it down through lawsuit threats
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1ngldh


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June 02, 2012, 09:57:53 PM
 #35

It's hilarious that Apple portrayed itself in advertisements for years as the young rebel next to the staid IBM PC (for example, see this photo: http://wpcdn2.padgadget.com/wp-content/uploads/2011/08/ipvpc.jpg).  Now, Apple is the establishment figure and Google/Android/Linux (and PC hardware upon which you can install any OS) is the young rebel.  



Even worse, their arch 'nemesis' Bill Gates has been using his billions to eradicate polio and other disease around the world for free while Apple continues to employ child labor and generally be an evil corporation

Can't you just host the app outside the apple store? Or would they shut it down through lawsuit threats
No, the problem is that unless you have a jailbroken phone, it is actually impossible to install any app other than ones that come from the app store. The software won't allow it. And that is the problem: The phone should allow installs, even if Apple doesn't want to "endorse" the software by listing it in the app store, but unfortunately that isn't the case.

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June 02, 2012, 11:09:31 PM
 #36

honest question:

has anyone attempted to write a HTML5 client with device local storage of keys optimized for iOS?
that way the app does not need to go into the dreaded app store, the user can just save a shortcut to the site.

there are even libraries out there that allow access to barcode scanners from html. phoneGap also supports custom URIs (though i doubt this will work with "web only")
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June 02, 2012, 11:32:03 PM
 #37


My suggestion to the OP here is very simple. Release the software under either the GPL v3 or the AGPL v3 so that it can be distributed for jail broken iPhones via the Cydia store http://cydia.saurik.com/ for example. I am suggesting GPL v3 or AGPL v3 because of the strong anti Tivoization provisions in these licenses that will keep the software out of the Apple store and similar “walled gardens” such as the one planned by Microsoft. If Apple at a subsequent date changes its mind the OP can then, in addition to the GPL v3 or AGPL v3, license his software under a propriety license for distribution through the Apple store for a royalty.  This has the added benefit to the Bitcoin network of providing a financial incentive to jailbreak iPhones by in effect “taxing” the walls of the “walled garden”.


+1

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June 03, 2012, 02:38:08 AM
 #38

Can't you just host the app outside the apple store? Or would they shut it down through lawsuit threats

Non-jailbroken iPhones can't install anything but aproved apple store apps.  Period.  No workaround possible.  When you consider that 90%+ of user base is never going to jailbreak their phone it means you have an effective marketshare of less than Windows Mobile. Smiley


Android on the other hand by default only installs apps from android marketplace (now stupidly rebranded "google play" WTF?) but if you go into settings it is simply an off/on slider to allow installs from other locations.

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June 03, 2012, 03:59:58 AM
 #39

Can't you just host the app outside the apple store? Or would they shut it down through lawsuit threats

Non-jailbroken iPhones can't install anything but aproved apple store apps.  Period.  No workaround possible.  When you consider that 90%+ of user base is never going to jailbreak their phone it means you have an effective marketshare of less than Windows Mobile. Smiley


Android on the other hand by default only installs apps from android marketplace (now stupidly rebranded "google play" WTF?) but if you go into settings it is simply an off/on slider to allow installs from other locations.



This does beg the question: Is a person who jailbreaks their iPhone more likely to use Bitcoin than one who does not? Realistically given the current market share of Bitcoin I would not ignore the jailbroken iPhone market.

Concerned that blockchain bloat will lead to centralization? Storing less than 4 GB of data once required the budget of a superpower and a warehouse full of punched cards. https://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/8/87/IBM_card_storage.NARA.jpg https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Punched_card
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June 11, 2012, 12:37:18 PM
 #40

Was it hosting the block chain in the app? Maybe AT&T and Verizon said get rid of it because of data or something.
No, we got the same answer from Apple. We're using the appeal process, for the second time, we got stonewalled the first time.
We're not excluding a lawsuit since, as paying customers (developer licenses are not free) we believe we are entitled to either :
 - get told where the legal issue resides,
 - OR get an official developer guidelines update explicitly stating that Bitcoin is not cool on the AppStore (which would mean lots of press!)



Have you heard anything back from Apple on your second appeal attempt?

Founding Director, Bitcoin Foundation
I also cover the bitcoin economy for Forbes, American Banker, PaymentsSource, and CoinDesk.
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