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Cellphones Upgrades Wireless Networking

iPhone 3.1 Update Disables Tethering 684

Posted by CmdrTaco
from the but-i-how-will-i-torrent-from-a-corn-field dept.
jole writes "The newest iPhone 3.1 update intentionally removed tethering functionality from all phones operating in networks that are not Apple partners. This is not limited to hacked or jailbroken phones, but also includes expensive 'officially supported' factory-unlocked phones. To make the problem worse, Apple has made it impossible to downgrade back to a working 3.0 version for iPhone 3GS phones."
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IPhone 3.1 Update Disables Tethering

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  • by Chrisq (894406) on Monday September 14, 2009 @10:12AM (#29413077)
    Apple fanboys really enjoy tethering. Along with aby other type of bondage.
  • !Surprised (Score:4, Funny)

    by Anonymous Coward on Monday September 14, 2009 @10:12AM (#29413079)

    No one is surprised enough to comment.

  • Buy a Pre (Score:3, Insightful)

    by d3ac0n (715594) on Monday September 14, 2009 @10:14AM (#29413109)

    Palm Pre (and Pixi) has a Homebrew community with a FREE tether program.

    WebOS phones are Open Source OS phones, so the Tether capability can't be disabled as it's based on Open functionality, not a closed API.

    in the US, a Sprint Simply Everything plan (includes Unlimited data use) is around $1000.00 cheaper a year to have.

    So, you can have an Open Source phone with a real Homebrew community, a cheaper unlimited plan and have your Tethering program UNBLOCKABLE. Sounds like the Pre is a better deal all around.

    Unless you are an isnob, of course.

    • by dmacleod808 (729707) on Monday September 14, 2009 @10:18AM (#29413157)
      I love how you capitalized "Unlimited" as if it really were "Unlimited" I doubt in the dictionary it states the definition of Unlimited to mean "Without limit, except in the case of a 5gb limit"
      • by d3ac0n (715594) on Monday September 14, 2009 @10:20AM (#29413187)

        No, I capitalized "Unlimited" because I have capsitis and tend to overuse the shift key. I was in a hurry to post and didn't spell/caps-check my post properly.

        Sorry about that.

      • Re:Buy a Pre (Score:5, Insightful)

        by bemymonkey (1244086) on Monday September 14, 2009 @10:27AM (#29413269)

        Is the equivalent iPhone plan truly unlimited? Or are you just going off on a tangent here?

      • Re: (Score:3, Informative)

        by Anonymous Coward
        Sprint's Unlimited data actually means unlimited...on phones. Their data cards and official tethering plans have a 5gb limit, but if you have the right phone and know how to tether it (WinMo can do it, rooted Android as well), you can download all you want.
      • Re: (Score:3, Informative)

        by spidrw (868429)
        Actually, I believe it really is 'unlimited,' as they're assuming you're not tethering and only using the phone to do your browsing. If you get a data card, or a tethering plan, then you'll see that limit imposed. There are scores of people who use their Pre's to listen to Pandora all day, and regularly go over 5 gb/month and never have a problem. Might that change in the future? Yes, but so far it's not a problem.
    • by glop (181086)

      Hi,

      how can it be a 1000$ cheaper? The Iphone's ATT plan is about 1000$ a year I believe (I don't have one so I never saw the bill...).
      Could you elaborate?

          Thanks

    • Or unless the Sprint coverage sucks in your area.

      I live in a major metropolitan area, and unfortunately AT&T has the best coverage, by far.

    • Re:Buy a Pre (Score:5, Informative)

      by CXI (46706) on Monday September 14, 2009 @10:28AM (#29413285) Homepage
      Um, I've been doing that for a long time now on Windows Mobile using home brew ROMs. I really hate hearing about all these awesome innovations by Palm and Apple that I've been using for years, but nobody cares because it's Windows Mobile! I'm also on Verizon, so I've had faster and more widespread network coverage as well (at least everywhere that I need my phone to work in the US).
      • Re:Buy a Pre (Score:5, Informative)

        by Greyfox (87712) on Monday September 14, 2009 @10:48AM (#29413543) Homepage Journal
        Some 5 year ago now I imported a Nokia E70 from overseas for use with T-Mobile. Not only did the phone support bluetooth and wired tethering right out of the box, but it had a generic SIP client that worked perfectly with my asterisk setup on the wifi network. T-Mobile eventually intentionally put a stop to unsigned clients (Read: My imported and unlocked phone) using their data network, which was when I dropped them. On the plus side coming from their data network makes AT&T look good, which I'm told is about the only way the AT&T service or data network could look good.

        The Nokia E90 Communicator looks like an even better phone but we're not going to see it in the USA, presumably because it has similar features. Other than the shiny Apple interface and the difficulty with making it work with a US provider, the E70 was a superior phone to the iPhone for my particular needs. If I could be guaranteed that the E90 would work with a US provider and would not have its features intentionally brain damaged by the telcos, I would drop my iPhone in a heartbeat for one.

        The technology has been there for years, it's the telcos screwing things up.

        • Re: (Score:3, Interesting)

          by mrsbrisby (60242)

          T-Mobile eventually intentionally put a stop to unsigned clients

          Rubbish. I don't know what you're doing wrong, but I use an AT&T-branded Blackberry 8310 with my T-mobile account. T-mobile doesn't have a 8310, so I can assure you that T-mobile not only allows "unsigned clients" (whatever the fuck that means; unlocked? different vendor-id?), but their telephone support helped me do it.

      • Re:Buy a Pre (Score:5, Insightful)

        by ArhcAngel (247594) on Monday September 14, 2009 @11:11AM (#29413831)

        I've been doing that for a long time now on Windows Mobile using home brew ROMs.

        90% of the road warriors out there are not using and don't want to use home brew for their business needs.

        I really hate hearing about all these awesome innovations by Palm, Apple, & Windows Mobile using home brew ROMs that I've been using for years on my Blackberry, but nobody cares because it's Research In Motion (RIM)!

        Tethering un-modded for years!

      • Re: (Score:3, Informative)

        by b4dc0d3r (1268512)

        This is the internet. You can think before you start typing. No need to type "Um", which usually means "I'm about to say something". If you're using text to speech, you can edit out those extra filler words to make your post more clear.

        Unless you used it in the "I can't believe all of you are so completely stupid" sense. In that case, you're right, nobody cares.

    • Baseband locking (Score:5, Interesting)

      by goombah99 (560566) on Monday September 14, 2009 @10:31AM (#29413337)

      I was under the impression, perhaps wrongly, that apple was locking their phones basebands. That is the locking is occuring in the cell-phone part of the phone which has it's very own firmware and DSP not the main "operating system" CPU part of the phone. So this tethering denial may be just a side effect of the well known baseband locking that occurs when they lock the cell phone to a carrier class. The iphone Dev team has never cracked the Cell phone firmware.

      I think it might be "pre"-mature to say the pre is completely open source. The CPU part of the phone might be, but does that assure that they won't permenantly lock the carrier class? I could imagine that some service providers might want Palm to do just that in return for subsidizing the phone.

      We shall see. Right now there's not enough Pre phones out there for the main market let alone a gray market of re-banded phones to be siginficant. Apple did not start locking the phones this way till the 3G. the 2G phones supposedly, it is said, can't be locked that way. But I honestly don't know enough to argue the matter, I'm just repeating what i've gleaned on the iphone-dev team blogs.

      • Re:Baseband locking (Score:5, Informative)

        by aetherworld (970863) on Monday September 14, 2009 @11:03AM (#29413733) Homepage
        You're right, the lock occurs in the phone's baseband. That's why the next *sn0w unlock by the iphone dev team will probably modify the .ipsw file so that you can update your phone to 3.1 WITHOUT updating the baseband, thus allowing both tethering AND downgrades to 3.0. TFA is WRONG. I have a contract in my country which allows tethering and while it's true that tethering stopped working immediately after the 3.1 update, my provider unlocked tethering a few days later.
    • Re: (Score:3, Funny)

      by Ephemeriis (315124)

      Yeah... Except those Pre commercials are creepy as hell.

    • by davidwr (791652) on Monday September 14, 2009 @10:46AM (#29413521) Homepage Journal

      Unless you are an isnob, of course.

      According to the iMarketing department, all iWords must be written with the second letter in iCaps.

  • by imgod2u (812837) on Monday September 14, 2009 @10:15AM (#29413113) Homepage

    Fuck AT&T. I don't tether currently. I didn't cringe when I got charged $26 per line for "activation". I didn't cringe at signing a 2-year contract to get a phone for $300. I didn't even cringe at an "unlimited" data plan that limits downloads to 10MB files (which, coincidentally, is smaller than most of the apps on the "approved" app store).

    Why is Apple sticking with these people. The overall user experience of an "approved" iPhone is significantly worse because of AT&T's behavior as greedy little fucktards.

    • by Cheerio Boy (82178) * on Monday September 14, 2009 @10:21AM (#29413189) Homepage Journal

      Fuck AT&T. I don't tether currently. I didn't cringe when I got charged $26 per line for "activation". I didn't cringe at signing a 2-year contract to get a phone for $300. I didn't even cringe at an "unlimited" data plan that limits downloads to 10MB files (which, coincidentally, is smaller than most of the apps on the "approved" app store).

      Why is Apple sticking with these people. The overall user experience of an "approved" iPhone is significantly worse because of AT&T's behavior as greedy little fucktards.

      If you read the article you'll see that it's not just AT&T that Apple did it for. It's across all providers even if they have a legally unlocked phone and approved tethering in their contracts. I can only hope Apple gets a ton of bad press and negative feedback on this one and puts tethering back.

      Especially since they are now effectively committing fraud: http://www.apple.com/iphone/iphone-3gs/tethering.html [apple.com]

      • Re: (Score:3, Informative)

        by Anonymous Coward

        http://www.iphonewzealand.co.nz/2009/telecom/warning-for-xt-users-iphone-os-3-1-disables-tethering/ explains why your tethering stops working

      • by Guspaz (556486) on Monday September 14, 2009 @12:24PM (#29415049)

        No, it's not all providers. Tethering still works fine in 3.1 on providers that support it, such as Fido/Rogers in Canada.

        For example, my iPhone from Fido running 3.1 still has tethering support, just like it always has.

        Tethering has only been disabled in 3.1 for providers that don't officially support the iPhone. That sucks, certainly, but let's not engage in hyperbole. If you buy a phone not supported by your carrier, you run the risk of this sort of thing. That's true with any phone, not just the iPhone.

        • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

          by Anonymous Coward

          "If you buy a phone not supported by your carrier..." What the heck? There is a reason why we have standards such as GSM and WCDMA. It SHOULD not matter what kind of a phone you have.

        • by initialE (758110) on Monday September 14, 2009 @05:48PM (#29419671)

          a phone not supported by your carrier

          Listen to yourself. Your carrier is not supposed to support a phone, it is supposed to support a _standard_, whether it is CDMA, iMode or GSM like the rest of the world uses, This makes it possible to bring your phone overseas with you too, you know, and do things like buy a phone without the uncertainty of wondering if it will work where you live. The thing is, you've been in slavery so long that your level of expectation is so much lower than that of everyone else. Yes, you, American.

        • by jfanning (35979) on Tuesday September 15, 2009 @02:16AM (#29422981) Homepage

          Tethering has only been disabled in 3.1 for providers that don't officially support the iPhone. That sucks, certainly, but let's not engage in hyperbole. If you buy a phone not supported by your carrier, you run the risk of this sort of thing. That's true with any phone, not just the iPhone.

          That is completely not true. If I buy an unlocked phone I have the expectation that every feature supported by the phone will work unless the operator doesn't specifically have that feature (like an MMS server).

          Tethering is totally different in that regard. The network can't tell if the bits come from the phone or a device using the phone as a modem. So it is completely artificial to limit tethering and Apple had no right to disable it for all non-partner networks. Whether I can use tethering is between me and the mobile operator. Apple has nothing to do with it and this.

          This sort of action is so completely in line with Apple current practices though and I hope their asses get nailed to the wall because of it. It might teach them a lesson.

    • by vadim_t (324782)

      Fuck AT&T. I don't tether currently. I didn't cringe when I got charged $26 per line for "activation". I didn't cringe at signing a 2-year contract to get a phone for $300. I didn't even cringe
      at an "unlimited" data plan that limits downloads to 10MB files (which, coincidentally, is smaller than most of the apps on the "approved" app store).

      And that's precisely why you got such a crappy deal, which just got even worse.

      Complain. Threaten to quit. If not listened to, quit, and explain why you did. And don

  • by Anonymous Coward
    This is why I refuse to buy any Apple related products.
  • Purchased Feature (Score:5, Interesting)

    by DontLickJesus (1141027) on Monday September 14, 2009 @10:17AM (#29413135) Homepage Journal
    Was this feature was purchased with the phone? I see a class action looming if so. Manufacturers do not hold the right to downgrade product after purchase.
  • by headhot (137860) on Monday September 14, 2009 @10:20AM (#29413177) Homepage

    So the FCC has started looking into unfair business practices of cell providers. This could be a smoking gun. A 100% legal unbundled phone that will only support tethering on a single providers network, that previously did support tethering.

    • Re: (Score:3, Informative)

      by truthsearch (249536)

      Tethering was never supported in the US. So the FCC would have no interest in this particular case.

  • This is why (Score:2, Interesting)

    by WindBourne (631190)
    Google's android will win out. MS locks you into crap expensive software, while Mac locks you into crappy expensive networks.
    • Re:This is why (Score:4, Informative)

      by L4t3r4lu5 (1216702) on Monday September 14, 2009 @10:28AM (#29413307)
      The only crap, expensive software I have on my Diamond 2 is... Erm... Oh, wait, I downloaded a cooked community ROM with all of the rubbish removed and installed the apps I use. The WinMobile community is HUGE, with a large amount of free software for the platform.

      XDA Developers [xda-developers.com] is somewhere you want to look before considering purchasing any smartphone, especially one you want to toy around with.
  • by David Gerard (12369) <slashdot@NospAm.davidgerard.co.uk> on Monday September 14, 2009 @10:23AM (#29413213) Homepage

    After bricking unlocked iPhones, kicking applications off the iPhone store that might even slightly compete with anything Apple or AT&T might vaguely think about in the far future and filing a wave of patents on basic well-known computer science, Apple Inc. today filed a Form 8-K with the Securities and Exchange Commission declaring that it was openly adopting Evil(tm) [today.com] as a corporate policy.

    "Fuck it," said Steve Jobs to an audience of soul-mortgaged thralls, "we're evil. But our stuff is sooo good. You'll keep taking our abuse. You love it, you worm. Because our stuff is great. It's shiny and it's pretty and it's cool and it works. It's not like you'll go back to Windows Mobile. Ha! Ha!"

    Steve Ballmer of Microsoft was incensed at the news. "Our evil is better than anyone's evil! No-one sweats the details of evil like Microsoft! Where's your antitrust trial, you polo-necked bozo? We've worked hard on our evil! Our Zune's as evil as an iPod any day! I won't let my kids use a lesser evil! We're going to do an ad about that! I'll be in it! With Jerry Seinfeld! Beat that! Asshole."

    "Of course, we're still not evil," said Sergey Brin of Google. "You can trust us on this. Every bit of data about you, your life and the house you live in is strictly a secret between you and our marketing department. But, hypothetically, if we were evil, it's not like you're going to use Windows Live Search. I mean, 'Bing.' Ha! Ha! I'm sorry, that's my 'spreading good cheer' laugh. Really."

  • I remember... (Score:3, Insightful)

    by neowolf (173735) on Monday September 14, 2009 @10:25AM (#29413243)
    ...when I actually wanted an iPhone. Glad I never wasted the money. Why would anyone want to buy something thats capabilities change almost monthly at the whim of Apple and AT&T? It still can't do things an old Moto RAZR did five years ago. The iPhone was relegated to "gadget" status at my company earlier this year (meaning they won't support it as a communication tool for managers). Now it seems to be failing in the gadget category as-well. I really don't even know who to blame anymore- AT&T is an obvious target, but Apple is responsible for a lot of this too.
  • by Trifthen (40989) on Monday September 14, 2009 @10:25AM (#29413247) Homepage

    ... but of entertainment for the rest of us. Seriously, this is hilarious. It's like being back in high school again and watching the heartrending saga of Jill and her cavalcade of BFFs finally have a tragic argument destined to elicit tears at every juncture. For the participants, tears of frustration and despair, and for the viewing public, tears of laughter.

    I mean, really.

    Apple: "Our new phone is awesome!"
    Fans: "Yes, it is! Wait... where's cut and paste, and media messaging?"
    AT&T: LOLwhat?

    Then...

    Apple: "We now have cut and paste... kinda! And the phone is faster!"
    Fans: "Yay! Wait... I want a refund on the difference!"
    AT&T: "I'm sitting this one out!"

    And now...

    Apple: "We now have tethering, and media messaging!"
    AT&T: "No we don't! In fact, you're killing our network by using the extra capacity you paid for!"
    Fans: "I'll cut you!"

    I just... don't even know what to say. Kudos, to all participants. You've provided more drama than money could buy, and for that, I thank you!

  • *sigh* ... (Score:2, Offtopic)

    by Sonic McTails (700139)
    I'm no Apple lover (nor do I have any great love of Microsoft), but I can at least say Microsoft was never THIS bad with Windows Mobile nor did they lock you down into this kind of ecosystem of control. At least you could write your own programs from Windows Mobile and extend it all you want without Microsoft trying to break you (or being obsessively married to the carrier). Apple-fanboi's take note: I can take control of any other smartphone (Windows Mobile, Blackberry, Android*, etc and get it to do what
  • by Chas (5144) on Monday September 14, 2009 @10:28AM (#29413297) Homepage Journal

    Except when they don't want it to.

  • by timeOday (582209) on Monday September 14, 2009 @10:31AM (#29413345)
    Can they do that?

    Ha ha, just kidding. Welcome to America.

  • It's worse. (Score:4, Interesting)

    by anethema (99553) on Monday September 14, 2009 @10:33AM (#29413367) Homepage
    It is actually worse than this for 3.0 lovers. Apple is refusing to sign any more firmware images pre-3.1. This means if you have a problem and need to restore, you WILL be upgraded to 3.1, even if you just want to restore your 3.0. There is (as of yet, and speaking to the dev team maybe forever) no solution around this problem. You only hope would be to have grabbed your signing keys prior to the 3.1 release(or just keeping a 3.0 image around downloaded within itunes), which is something beyond most of the population.

    Unfortunately, the 3.1 update also removes any ability of an unlock because they upgrade the baseband as well. I use the term upgrade loosely because they removed most of the minicom commands the baseband will accept to limit their exposure to exploits.

    That being said I'm happy with my iPhone because I'm in the small minority of people who jailbreak their phones and don't hit update until a dev team member has a solution for me to upgrade without losing the functionality I've come to enjoy.
  • by diamondsw (685967) on Monday September 14, 2009 @10:36AM (#29413393)

    A hack that has been disabled at AT&T's request, just like it would be on any other phone that has updates. Apple didn't "remove a feature" - the iPhone can still tether just fine - as long as your carrier supports it.

    Does it suck? Hell yes. Is it unexpected? Hell no.

    This was in all of the betas, and known about two months ago. If you were "in the know" enough to install a hacked carrier profile on your device, then you should have been following closely enough to know not to install the update. (Oh, and the Pre and it's "free" homebrew community? What about those mandatory updates that install themselves after ten days? And the data collection Palm does? Apple doesn't even do either of those.)

    Throw this down at AT&T's feet, not Apple's. Apple certainly has no interest in you tethering or not. If anything, it makes their device more valuable, so they have an interest in allowing it. But clearly AT&T would rather rape you at an unspecified future date for an unspecified amount of money. All the more reason for Apple to leave AT&T as soon as possible.

    • by julesh (229690) on Monday September 14, 2009 @10:49AM (#29413577)

      A hack that has been disabled at AT&T's request, just like it would be on any other phone that has updates. Apple didn't "remove a feature" - the iPhone can still tether just fine - as long as your carrier supports it.

      This doesn't appear to be true. Based on what I've read, tethering is only possible now if your carrier supports it *and* Apple supports your carrier. For instance, Orange here in the UK support tethering on most plans. But Orange isn't a supported carrier for iPhone (as Apple have an exclusive deal with O2), so even if a buy an unlocked iPhone from Apple, I wouldn't be able to use it for tethering on Orange.

    • Re: (Score:3, Interesting)

      by stiller (451878)

      As the owner of a carrier-neutral iPhone (I actually paid the full amount in Belgium for a phone without strings attached), I use a "hacked" profile. It's actually perfectly legal for me to do so, as I pay my carrier for "full" data bundle, including tethering support. In this specific case, tethering is still enabled after the 3.1 update. So either Apple makes an exception for simlock-free phones, or my profile slipped through the checks. Any ideas?

    • Re: (Score:3, Informative)

      by ElSupreme (1217088)
      No Apple does not have a interest in you being able to tether. They get a cut of your $40 a month tethering plan. That is why this is disabled for ALL CARRIERS that are not APPLE partners. You can't do it unless they get a cut. Even if you have an unlocked phone, you CAN'T tether on a non Apple partner network.

      In the US no network (to my knowledge) allows 'free' tethering from devices, that costs extra. So your 'as long as your carries supports it' still sort of works, but if T-Mobile decided to start sup
    • Re: (Score:3, Informative)

      by Kjella (173770)

      A hack that has been disabled at AT&T's request, just like it would be on any other phone that has updates. Apple didn't "remove a feature" - the iPhone can still tether just fine - as long as your carrier supports it.

      No, it disables tethering on all ISPs worldwide except those blessed by Apple, including those that have no problem with it.

    • Re: (Score:3, Informative)

      by ras (84108)

      Throw this down at AT&T's feet, not Apple's.

      Nope, I'd definitely lay it at Apples feet.

      Compare Apple to Nokia. Both allow the phones they sell to be locked down. Both do it in a similar way - the carrier loads a file into the phone. It's called the mobileconfig by Apple, I gather. The difference? If you buy a Nokia outright, nothing is locked down. That makes sense - it is your phone after all. The only way a carrier can lock a Nokia down is to sell it to you locked - presumably at a discount for the privilege.

      In typical Apple fashion however,

  • by MindlessAutomata (1282944) on Monday September 14, 2009 @10:40AM (#29413447)

    I've always been a PC at heart.

    Not like the rest, the others. Everyone around me. I was at odds with my society and knew it early since birth. Unlike them, I did not "Think Different!"--the mantra of the Macs around me, the phrase on all the billboards in the city that served as a reminder to its citizenry. Sameness pervaded the essence of my being and no amount of self-conditioning I did could change that. Eventually, I gave up and isolated myself emotionally from society.

    I gaze at the faces going by, the white earphones contrasting their black turtlenecks, connecting their ears to their pockets, their blank faces engrossed in hip Indie rock music and various garage bands. I envied them for their perfection against my flaws and my compulsive nature to expand, to burden my life with troubles instead of remaining, like them, simple and easy to deal with. The grandest of virtues, simplicity... the philosophy by our loyal benefactor Steve Jobs, who descended from the heavens, creating the Earth, the iron, the wind and the rain. Steve Jobs, who defined the parameters of existence, the one who set about the patterns of reality, the constants, the variables. He who made gravity, electromagnetic energy, and shaped atomic structures and brought forth motion. From these things, he crafted the elements, processed them, refined them, and from these things engineered Apple products through the purity of his mind. Each Apple product was individually crafted by his own hands with the programming code used to run each device having being compiled in his brain and uploaded to each device telepathically, breathing life and perfection into each and every unit.

    Except, it seems, for me, for I was not among the many. I was a PC. They were Macs. I've always been a cold, stiff person. I got by, disguising myself by keeping my non-Ipod music player safely out of sight, which I use because of my depraved nature demanding more functionality than the simple and easy-to-use Ipods have to offer.. In the safety of my own home, behind locked doors, I ran a Forbidden, a contraband computer from more depraved, earlier days that was not given the love and blessing of being birthed by Steve Jobs. I dual booted, out of the great sin of curiosity-- curiosity, a shameful value of a PC, as curiosity has no place where simplicity matters most--using two of the great unutterable blasphemies-- something called "Windows Vista" and something else called "Linux." Although, as I mentioned before, although my tendency to be a PC and towards conformity has always been inherent to me, I was truly transformed when I found these old things in a hidden cache of computer parts predating The Purging. Perhaps the greatest sin of all, the single evil that, if discovered, would damn me forever, was the fact that my mouse had more than one button.

    As I walk among the Macs on the streets, passing the Starbuckses as I went along, I wondered how it all came to this. I glanced at The Holy Marks on the foreheads as the people wandered down the streets, the Bitten Apple tattooed on all our of us at birth, and wondered if, perhaps, there could be something more to life. But again, this was a PC's thought, and not, like everyone elses', a Mac's. We were to hold ourselves to the philosophy of Steve Jobs--so as his products were designed for idiots, so too were we to be idiots. But I was not a Mac--I was not an idiot. I was simply too complicated to be a worthwhile person.

    Nature called. I found a nearby public iPoo--squeaky clean and sparkly white, things weren't all bad--and let myself go, expelling the waste that had accumulated inside me. After relieving myself and committing the overly-complicated and thus illegal act of wiping my ass (I did not flush as iPoos, designed to be idiot-proof, did not flush) I left and once again wandered the streets aimlessly, hoping to find some meaning in a world where I simply did not belong, a world where if my true nature was discovered, I would be endlessly persecuted by smug, self-righteous sons of bitches.

  • by sg_oneill (159032) on Monday September 14, 2009 @10:41AM (#29413475)

    Weird. Tethering is on my 3.1 phone. Not sure whats happening to you folks.

    General menu -> Netowork ->Tethering -> On.

    About says:
    Network: YES OPTUS (australian carrier)
    Line: Virgin Mobile
    Version: 3.1 (7C144)

    I'm on the developer program so maybe developers get extra goodies?

    • Re: (Score:3, Informative)

      by artemis67 (93453)

      Yep, it's gone. I'm in the US, where AT&T is still dragging their feet on tethering and MMS. I didn't jailbreak my iPhone, but I did download the Network configuration file that unlocked Apple's built-in tethering capability. After reading this story, I went and checked it in the Settings; still there. I switched it on. Nothing happened. I go back into Settings, and now the tethering option is gone. They spiked it.

  • i cant stand (Score:3, Insightful)

    by nimbius (983462) on Monday September 14, 2009 @10:43AM (#29413491) Homepage
    mac fanboys crying about their expensive telephone and masquerading it as a slashdot article. i especially love how the submitter stated "very expensive" when describing the unlocked phones. you didnt buy a macphone for the cost savings, so stop acting like its suddenly an issue.

    the cognitive dissonance here is mac users are starting to realize no matter how great a guy steve jobs is for the I culture, Ma bell will always have the last word. no, they dont share the mac philosophy of innovation and ease of use because it goes against their closed system of regulated service. you knew this when you owned a regular cellphone before you bought the i-phone and continued to ignore it. you knew the telco was screwing you for the cost of the phone, the cost of the data service, and the support but you ignored it because of the cool factor.

    heres your tipping point: dont like it? stop buying it. innovation or no, if its at the cost of your freedoms which you so easily discard time and time again, is it really worth it? This device isnt designed to further the culture of mac or innovation, its designed to make money. its designed to use the mac brand, the mac cult, and steve jobs to make money. had AT&T a say, they would just as soon abolish advanced features and run everything off AS400's for all eternity but the customer constantly demands more, and they see the tie-in with apple as a chance for branding.
  • by diamondsw (685967) on Monday September 14, 2009 @10:44AM (#29413503)
    So deal with it already, and quit with the hysterics. There's been Nothing New To See Here for years now.
    • iPhone: Single vendor/carrier in most areas, with significant lock-in. Tightly tied to iTunes on the desktop and the app store. Jailbreaking possible, of course, but it can be fragile.
    • Pre: Single vendor/carrier, with significant lock-in. Mildly less application lock-in with homebrew hacking, but not all that different from iPhone jailbreaking. OS updates are mandatory so this can change at any time (they're installed automatically after ten days). Palm collects obscene amounts of data on its users, so goodbye privacy.
    • Android: "Free" - until you try to get root access, and then we're back to fairly involved hacking again. So as usual, only as free as they let you be.

    So yeah - NONE of these phones are remotely free out of the box. All of them can be hacked to do what you want with them. Pick your poison.

    • by mmurphy000 (556983) on Monday September 14, 2009 @11:12AM (#29413835)

      The difference with Android, versus the other two options, is that the hardware manufacturer and the OS implementer are decoupled.

      Android supports root just fine. However, device manufacturers offer no official means to get to root and no official means to flash root-enabled system images. This is no different than Linux supporting root but TiVo not exactly enabling it on their DVRs.

      What Android needs is some manufacturer to step up and offer root-capable devices, with limited muss or fuss.

      • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

        how can you honestly think that any phone company or manufacturer or service provider would think to themselves "hmm we need to sell more phones with this platform, lets open up root and advertise full control and opensource and linux because the general populace will eat that up unlike close sourced, easy to use, locked down phones with pretty features that the user doesnt have to worry about".

        This isn't about pleasing Slashdot or nerds with strange entitlement issues it's about selling a device for profi
    • by urulokion (597607) on Monday September 14, 2009 @11:24AM (#29414049)
      ...until now (well it's is coming "Soon (tm)"). The new Nokia N900. A truely open mobile computer (with a phone). It's Debian under the fancy Maemo hood. Albeit not x86.

      Getting a root shell using the building Xterm is very easy for those that want to do it, and are a bit technically inclined. Add a certain repo, add the rootsh .deb, open xterm, sudo gain root, and viola! Or you can enable R&D mode using the flasher (firmware updater) utility.
    • Re: (Score:3, Informative)

      by GodKingAmit (1192629)

      You can buy the developer version of the android from google directly that comes with root access.

  • by erroneus (253617) on Monday September 14, 2009 @10:49AM (#29413573) Homepage

    Could it be the abusive wireless companies? No... they have shown time and time again that they do not improperly influence or direct Apple to do any of the things they have done lately such as removing the Google voice suite from the App store. Nope! Not a move pushed by AT&T and all the congressional investigations will show is that they didn't do it and/or don't "recall" doing it. That of course depends on the definition of what "it" means.

    Cue the Apple apologists and the others who say "well? don't buy an iPhone!"

    What about the poor souls who bought one with expected functionality and had it only to have it yanked out from under them.

    What is really wrong here is the lines of ownership. Once someone owns something, is it proper for the previous owner to change and manage how you can use it? Sure, users don't "own" the software, but that is a matter of question there as it has been shown in other instances that copyright holders don't always have the right to control how a work is used. (yes, I know there are exceptions such as playing a DVD in a bar/club... but frankly, I don't think that limitation should be allowed either.) With every push like this, the rights of consumers are being trampled and removed. This is a big and growing problem. Consumers need to push back.

  • by qazwart (261667) on Monday September 14, 2009 @11:32AM (#29414199) Homepage

    Tethering isn't disabled. What is disabled is tethering without the carrier giving you a signed configuration bundle to use.

    I've talked to a few people who use AT&T and still have tethering on their iPhones after upgrading. They got the new configuration bundle and have no problems.

    Apparently, this was a request from almost all of the official carriers to prevent the iPhone from tethering without their permission (which can be had for another $20 or so per month). This was originally aimed at supported carriers, but it is also affecting unsupported carriers too.

    That's what happens when you tie the hardware to the provider.

  • FUD (Score:4, Informative)

    by aristotle-dude (626586) on Monday September 14, 2009 @11:33AM (#29414205)
    AT&T disabled tethering for AT&T customers. Tethering is working fine on 3GS on Fido before and after the 3.1 update.
  • by Sandbags (964742) on Monday September 14, 2009 @12:30PM (#29415131) Journal

    I mean, come on, seriously. ANY time you;re doing something with an Apple device that's against the EULA or the provider's terms, Apple ALLWAYS turns off that function in the next release.

    Further, you were TOLD WEEKS AGO that 3.1 broke the provider file hack and that only jailbroken devices and phones runnin 3.0.1 and older would be able to maintain tethering.

    The hackers will win out and fix it soon enough, that is if AT&T doesn't start enabling it now anyway as they're doing with MMS.

    Plus, adding tethering to an iPhone is $25 more per month, not $60 like it is on the crackberry or the Pre.

  • by suteny0r (1003046) on Monday September 14, 2009 @03:30PM (#29417891)
    "3.0.1 ONLY fixes the SMS vulnerability... nothing else" Isn't that what we were all told?

    I noticed that the tethering functionality enabled by the profile from http://help.benm.at/tethering.php [help.benm.at] stopped working after my upgrade to 3.0.1

    The use of this profile works on even an un-jailbroken phone.

    They did it in a rather sneaky way. The UI for tethering is still there, and active. It even says 'tethered', when plugged in â" but the update causes the iPhone to ignore DHCP requests for an IP address from the external device, which then times out.

    The problem was immediately resolved by revving back to the 3.0 firmware.

    I tested both jailbroken and un-jailbroken, on both 3.0 and 3.0.1.

    3.0 tethering works, jailbreak or not, 3.0.1 tethering does NOT work, jailbreak or not.

    Shame on you Apple. If you're going to intentionally break functionality, at least be man enough not to lie about it.

You are in a maze of UUCP connections, all alike.

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