back to article iPhone 3.0 to nix app redownloading?

It appears as if Apple's iPhone 3.0 software may make it impossible for you to use your iPhone to redownload an app that you had previously purchased from the App Store. This restriction was pointed out by a Sunday posting on The iPhone Blog, which reports that when users running the iPhone 3.0 beta try to redownload an app …


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  1. Sampler

    and once they get users to except this

    then they remove the ability to redownload via pc and you will have to pay everytime.

  2. Kris Lord

    Annoying but won't prevent piracy

    If the idea is to share apps, then it will just be done via iTunes as this new system allows free downloads there. This change is just an annoyance rather than a good way of preventing unauthorised use.

    Apple should just publish some rule similar to that how songs can be authorised on 5 PC's and limit it by hardware ID's.

  3. Jeremy

    It's well know, isn't it...

    That with one hand, Apple giveth, with the other, Apple taketh away?

    Surely tying app downloads to a single unit would be an imperfect but better way to prevent the problem of multiple downloads?

    The cynic in me just thinks that Apple are after a quick buck from those who, 300 miles from their home computer need an application back that they deleted last month.

  4. Si

    Possibly a hoax?

    I just deleted an app on my iPhone with OS 3 Beta 5 and I'm looking at the re-download prompt right now and it says "You have already purchased this item. To download it again for free, select OK". Unless there's a newer firmware version not publicly available to developers yet this is probably a hoax or perhaps a bug that has allowed a disabled feature to work.

  5. Anonymous Coward
    Jobs Horns

    Typical "this is the way things are going"

    "You have already purchased this app, we know you have, our records tell us that you have purchased it already. We could allow you to download it again easily as your monthly subscription covers the cost of the bandwidth many times over. However we would prefer it if you gave us more money. Would you like to buy the app again or would you like to buy the app again? We suggest you buy the app again. Please choose an option, buy the app again.

  6. vincent himpe


    we are moving to a pay-per usage altogether. everytime you click something somehwere you here a -kaching-

    software as a service.... you can run anything , but everytime you run it you pay... the next move is to actually make you pay per second you actually use the app ....

  7. Chris Procter
    Thumb Down

    I've never had a problem

    I have the kates build of 3.0 and have had to download apps onto my iPhone every time apple have realeased an update. This is the first I've heard of it!!

    El reg scaremongering???

  8. Richard


    I think the article needs to be redacted a little as the second paragraph (which is correct) contradicts the first (which is incorrect).

  9. Jeff

    How is this any worse than MS?

    "Yes, you have paid for our software, but you have changed your hard drive/motherboard too many times, so we won't let you use it anymore"

  10. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Re: AC

    "You have already purchased this app, we know you have, our records tell us that you have purchased it already. We could allow you to download it again easily as your monthly subscription covers the cost of the bandwidth many times over..."

    What monthly subscription - the one you pay to your ISP? Apple doesn't get a cut of that. MobileMe? You don't need to have that to buy applications from the AppStore. ADC subscription? iPhone developer annual fee? Neither are relevant to most people and again not required.

    I'm not saying the change is good or that I agree with it - we don't even know if the change is real or not yet. But at least put a bit of logic into your trolling.

  11. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    @ jeff

    well done for getting a idiotic anti ms comment in here, you should get a medal that reads "i'm a internet retard". Go on, you deserve it.

  12. James Henstridge

    @Richard Drysdall

    Presumably he is referring to the subscription with the carrier (it is a phone, after all). At least for the case of phones subsidised by contracts, a portion of the monthly fee is going to Apple.

  13. Paw Bokenfohr

    @ Richard Drysdall

    He means the bandwidth you pay for with your monthly iPhone subscription. He might well be in the UK (as I am) where all plans come with unlimited data use, hence, his monthly subscription effectively includes the "cost" of downloading a <10MB application many, many times over.

    I don't believe he was trolling at all.

  14. Benny
    Thumb Up


    Yea it says that, so you click buy again, and it doesnt 'buy' it again, it just downloads it.

    Whoooaaa, thats a bit out there I know.

    Remember people, this is a BETA, not in the Googley sense, in the actual sense.


  15. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    @Richard Drysdall

    "What monthly subscription - the one you pay to your ISP? Apple doesn't get a cut of that. "

    Actually, they do. And Apple get a cut of your subscription regardless of how much data you use, rather than the profit to the operator (unlike the other way around, where the operator only gets a cut of the profit from the download of music via iTunes).

    Anon, 'cos I might still be under NDA. Even though I work for a different company now...

  16. D@v3

    RE: Richard Drysdall

    Take your own advice, at least put a bit of logic into /your/ trolling.

    I would imagine that the bandwidth that said AC was talking about, would be the bandwidth that covers your data package that is provided by your Mobile service Provider, at the behest of Apple.

    And if as you say, (which may or may not be true) i$ dont get a cut from your monthly phone bill, why would they want you to be able to re-download for free (price of data included in package), when they can charge you again directly.

  17. TeeCee Gold badge


    Particularly as it's actually: "......<blah>, so you're going to have to call and tell us what's happened so you can reinstall, but we won't have an issue with this."

    Been there, seen it, done it loads of times. This one refuses to go away though, presumably 'cos lots of people have heard the FUD, but very few have actually been through the process.

    Then again, it's M$'s FUD in the first place..........

  18. Neil


    This already happens with Songs. My daughter bought a song but it did not download properly, so she pressed it again and got the message "You have already bought this song, do you want to buy it again?".

    No I fucking do not. I want to download it as I've already paid for it. I went to the computer and tried it there as well. It won't download the song as part of the purchased ones, and insists I buy it again.

    I fucking hate Itunes.

  19. Law

    oh god

    I really hope this model doesn't make it to the final version, it sucks to have nice features removed from the phone, when they are supposed to be improving it!!

    That being said, who fills 8gb+ with downloaded apps??? I have tons of app's on, plus 6-7gb of music, and about 6 months worth of pics taken with the phone, and I still have a few hundred mb's left!

    @ Neil: In the time it's taken you to complain on here about it, I'm sure you could have spurted off an email towards Apple's box about it! ;) Still, it would annoy the crap out of me, but no software is perfect.... except mine obviously.

  20. Michael Brown
    Dead Vulture

    More ElReg scaremongering

    Lets find some unsubstantiated blog post, of very dubious veracity, and create an article about it to throw another bone for the Apple-hater commentards so they can re-confirm their completely irrational prejudice. Nice one.

  21. sleepy

    Here's how it works

    For the rabid, unthinking anti-Apple types, the content doesn't belong to Apple, if you buy again, you buy from the rights owner (eg Sony). Fairplay (Apple's DRM scheme) works as follows. It's the same for apps as for music, and it's remarkably unobtrusive for all normal situations.

    For one iTunes account, up to five PC's can be authorised. (you can de-authorise PC's too). Each device syncs with only one PC. You can have as many devices as you like (iPhones, iPods and yes, a few third party music players), but if you change the PC it syncs with, the old content is wiped.

    So, the two big user unobtrusiveness plusses: 1: you, the misses and the kids can buy a song or App once and all use it on multiple devices. 2: DRM'd content/apps will work for ever without any monthly handshake with the authorisation mother ship.

    And a comforting corollary of 2: you can never receive from Apple an email that, for example, Microsoft and Amazon have both sent out in the past: "We are closing our current service to make a new one. Please write all your music out to CD and re-encode it if you don't want your music player to die after we shut down the servers."

    I presume the problem that Apple are grappling with is that with direct downloading to a device, a device doesn't know the full list of authorised iTunes accounts its current sync PC will have at the next sync, and in particular if the account you are using to "re-download" is one of them. So, by never syncing you iPhone (as many people don't), you can log in with your mate's iTunes account and "re-download" all his stuff at no cost, outside the license terms. What's the "fair" way for Apple to handle this? Handle it they must.

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