Cydia lawsuit against Apple dismissed by judge, but complaint can be amended

Cydia, a popular jailbreak app store for iOS, has found its lawsuit dismissed by U.S. District Judge Yvonne Gonzalez Rogers. The lawsuit was initially filed in December 2020, and Apple had filed a motion to dismiss the lawsuit, which has just been granted.

Jay Freeman, the creator of Cydia, still has the option to file an amended complaint by January 19, which means that the fate of this lawsuit is not sealed yet.

Cydia vs Apple

Judge dismisses Cydia lawsuit against Apple

Cydia’s lawsuit was based on the claim that Apple had been involved in anticompetitive behavior. It alleged that Appleā€™s tactics tried to destroy Cydia before the company launched its official App Store on iPhone. The lawsuit also said that Apple had a monopoly over how apps could be installed on iPhone.

Lawyers representing Cydia, Quinn Emanuel Urquhart, and Sullivan, claim that Apple established a monopoly over software distribution on iOS devices, which at that time, was just the iPhone. They claim that if Apple had not locked down iOS, users today would have the choice to install apps from various sources, and developers would also have the flexibility to bypass the App Store.

Even though Cydia launched before the App Store, there was just a difference of a few months between the two. Cydia basically allowed users who jailbreak their iPhone, at that time, to install apps that would support customizing parts of iOS that Apple did not officially allow. Users could add new features that Apple had not created, but would later develop officially for future iOS updates.

Jailbreaking and Cydia also opened up the doors to app piracy, as uses could install certain tweaks and apps that would let them install pirated apps.

Legally, jailbreaking is not against the law, as per a U.S. Copyright Office ruling in 2009, however, that does not stop Apple from patching vulnerabilities used by jailbreak tools, and making it harder to bypass security measures with each new iPhone revision and iOS update.

During the time that Cydia filed its lawsuit, Epic Games also sued Apple only to see the judge rule in favor of the Cupertino giant but asked it to allow alternative payment options. 

Saurik Freeman will have until January 19 to file an amended complaint, while Apple would have until February 2 to respond to the complaint. 

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