The quiet war between Palm and Apple continues on as the former has released an update to its webOS operating system that allows the Pre to sync with iTunes 9.0.1, a feature that Apple had silently squeezed out.
John Zilber, director of online communications at Palm, wrote on the company's blog that "This release also re-enables the ability of Palm media sync to work with the current version of iTunes"; that includes photo syncing with iTunes as well.
But as certain as night follows day, one can expect Apple to retaliate with the launch of a new version of iTunes which prevents Pre users from syncing with Apple's media management application.
The 1.2.1 update from Palm is already available and weighs in at 38MB. Apart from the iTunes drama, the new update solves a connectivity problem with Microsoft's Exchange 2007.
The issue between Apple and Palm could escalate should the Cupertino-based company decide that, under the DCMA, Palm is interfering too much with iTunes' public interface by fooling the software to believe that the Pre (or the Pixi) is an iPod.
Or as a commentator puts it, "Palm could write their own software that would sync to your iTunes library; that's what RIM has done for the BlackBerry line". At the end of the day, Palm's customers, not Apple, are the one being hurt.
Palm has been quite sneaky about this one. Both Palm and Apple are part of the USB Implementers' Forum (USB-IF), a non profit organization. Apple has already received the backing of the group while Palm received what amounts to a clip round the ear.