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WinPhone iView app flap: Microsoft to pull 'unauthorised' app... coded by STAFFER

Australian dev did it for the taxpayer

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UPDATE A Microsoft employee has created an "unauthorised" Windows Mobile app to access a catch-up TV service in Australia.

The Australian Broadcasting Corporation (ABC) is the country's largest public broadcaster and its official iview player app is only available on iOS and Android.

The Windows Phone app, iview FTW!, is the creation of Tom Hollander, a “Solution Architect in Microsoft's Solutions Development Centre in Sydney, Australia”.

Hollander told The Reg he has had no contact with the ABC but that he would be “happy to talk to them if they have any concerns or are interested in collaborating on an official app".

He added: “My only motivation has been to ensure that Australians have access to the content they’ve already paid for as taxpayers on the devices and platforms they own and love.”

Not many Australians own Windows Phone devices: Kantar World Panel suggests about five per cent of the local phone market uses Redmond's mobile OS. That the platform lacks an official iview application may be one reason for low local takeup.

The ABC, through a spokes-entity, told us, “The ABC is aware of an app in the marketplace providing unofficial access to iview content, and is investigating this matter.”

"The ABC is obliged to take reasonable action to ensure iview content is used within the rights we acquire. At present, the rights that we acquire do not allow for distribution of iview content outside of ABC-approved services.”

The Reg has asked Microsoft Australia what it thinks of the app, not least because the company is a prominent member of the Business Software Association of Australia and therefore makes regular calls for intellectual property to be treated respectfully.

UPDATE

Microsoft has contacted The Reg and, through a spokes-entity, offered the following statement:

“The iView FTW! app will be removed from the Windows Store while we investigate the matter further. We take Intellectual property rights seriously and will take action to ensure that they are respected.”

®

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