iPad Owners Must Pay for OS Updates, May Not Get All Features
People who buy the new iPad with version 3.2 of the iPhone OS are entitled to one free update when version 4 comes out, according to the licensing agreement that was released last night
. This positions the new device - at least in terms of software licensing - as somewhere between an iPod and an iPhone, rather than between an iPhone and a MacBook
, as Apple has said.
Apple officially released the iPhone SDK 3.2 gold master for developers to download last night. The final version fixed some minor bugs and completed iPad support, and included the licensing agreement. MacRumors waded through the standard terms and conditions
to discover the limitation of one free major iPad software update before you have to pay. According to the agreement, "Apple will provide you any iPad OS software updates that it may release from time to time, up to and including the next major iPad OS software release following the version of iPad OS software that originally shipped…on your iPad, for free. If your iPad originally shipped with iPad 3.x software, Apple would provide you with any iPad OS software…up to and including iPad 4.x.” However, the agreement also stipulates that "such updates and releases may not necessarily include all of the new software features that Apple releases for newer iPad models".
iPod touch owners are used to paying for OS updates, but those updates have been full versions, including all the features supported by their hardware. If future releases of the iPhone OS are feature-limited to newer models, though, how happy are owners of older iPads going to be to pay for the updates?