According to MacRumors, Apple is cracking down on websites that distribute download links to pre-release Apple software like developer betas for iOS 16, iPadOS 16, and macOS Ventura. The move has resulted in at least two such platforms, BetaProfiles.com and IPSW.dev, shutting down.
IPSW.dev let users download IPSW files for pre-release Apple software, like the iOS 16 developer beta, through direct links to Apple’s servers, third-party links to file-sharing platform WeTransfer, and torrents.
On the other hand, BetaProfiles.com offered download links to both IPSW files and beta profiles. BetaProfiles.com told users that only those enrolled in Apple’s Developer Program could download the profiles, but the disclaimer could be ignored.
Both websites are no longer accessible. BetaProfiles.com said in a tweet that the website was taken offline to avoid a “legal battle with Apple.”
“Hi everyone, I just wanted to say that BetaProfiles will be shutting down soon, I just don’t want to get into a legal battle with Apple. BetaProfiles social media will remain as a place to discuss beta updates. Thanks guys so much,” said the site on Tuesday evening.
Aside from offering beta profiles for Apple users to download outside of the iPhone maker’s paid developer portal, the site operator benefitted from ad revenue from the hoards of visitors seeking early access to iOS 16 beta and more.
Hi everyone, I just wanted to say that BetaProfiles will be shutting down soon, I just don’t want to get into a legal battle with Apple. BetaProfiles social media will remain as a place to discuss beta updates. Thanks guys so much ❤️
— Beta Profiles (@BetaProfiles) August 10, 2022
Apple’s developer betas are works in progress meant exclusively for developer use. What’s more, you need to be a member of Apple’s Developer Program, which costs $99 USD per year, to be eligible to download developer betas.
The folks behind BetaProfiles.com told MacRumors that they received a letter from Apple’s lawyers and consequently took the website down to avoid potential litigation.
In addition, lawyers for Apple previously sent Twitter a Digital Millennium Copyright Act (DMCA) takedown notice for several tweets that contained links to websites like IPSW.dev. Twitter has since deleted the subject tweets “in response to a report from the copyright holder.”
Anyone who wants to get their hands on beta Apple software can also sign up for Apple’s public beta program, which is free. However, public betas are released a while after their developer counterparts.
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