The CEO wants you, the CIO, to take the lead on developing an iPhone app for the company. You’re more than happy to oblige, but where do you start? Besides the work of actually creating the app, the legal aspects of developing an app are such that they could readily sink anything you make before it really sets sail. This article by Robert McHale explores iPhone’s SDK Agreement—what it means for developers and how it impacts just what your app can and cannot do.
Follow Laws: Near and Far
The first part of the agreement notes the requirement of following all laws, both local and foreign. This in itself is a remarkable feat to accomplish, considering just how many laws that entails. Next, the use of music and content that carry copyrights:
Any music incorporated into your Application must be wholly owned by you or licensed to you on a fully “paid-up” basis. (Such a license should provide that the one-time, lump-sum payment is final, and that you are released from any and all further payment obligations to the Licensor, no matter how successful the Application becomes.) Further, any and all content in your Application must be owned by you, or be used by you with the owner’s permission. If you are using content other than music by virtue of a license, the license should state the royalty terms, if any, resulting from any and all sales of your Application.
Another part of the agreement concerns free and open source software. These must comply with all applicable FOSS licensing terms, and that the software must be secure.
Read the full article here before starting up your foray into iPhone app development: http://www.informit.com/articles/article.aspx?p=1433058