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Palm Pre ignores USB-IF warning, hacks into iTunes again

Palm has ignored warnings that it may be violating USB standards by fooling Apple's iTunes software, and updated its Pre smart phone again to hack into iTunes 9

Palm was warned very recently by the industry body that regulates the use of USB connections that it was not allowed to trick computers into thinking its products were made by another company when connecting via USB. It has ignored this warning and once again updated its Pre smart phone to allow it to hack into Apple's iTunes.

The Palm Pre goes on sale in the UK on 16 October. One of its biggest selling points for music fans is it works like an iPod when connected to iTunes. The problem is, it does this by telling iTunes it's an Apple iPod. It isn't, and the two companies have been in a spat over the issue for months in the US.

The USB-IF -- USB standards group -- told Palm in a letter last month that it "may only use the single Vendor ID issued to Palm for Palm's usage. Usage of any other company's Vendor ID is specifically precluded. Palm's expressed intent to use Apple's ID appears to violate the [USB-IF's] policy."

Apple will undoubtedly update iTunes soon to break once more the syncing capabilities between the software and the Pre. So if you're attracted to the Pre because it works like an iPod, don't be. It's more trouble than it's worth, and Palm may be in for an industrial-strength slap upside its head as a result.