Last night, a very interesting app appeared in the AppStore. It’s name was NetShare, a utility from Nullriver that allowed you to tether your iPhone’s internet connection to your computer. Many people, including myself, were quite surprised that this made it past the AppStore sensors. While AT&T offers tethering for many of it’s 3G devices, […]
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iPhone tethering approved by Apple! …. or not. (Updated 3x)

netshare.jpgLast night, a very interesting app appeared in the AppStore. It’s name was NetShare, a utility from Nullriver that allowed you to tether your iPhone’s internet connection to your computer.

Many people, including myself, were quite surprised that this made it past the AppStore sensors. While AT&T offers tethering for many of it’s 3G devices, iPhone is not one of them. It didn’t seem like an app like this would go down well with them, and apparently, it didn’t. About 18 minutes after NetShare arrived on the AppStore, it was taken down. You could still see it when you searched for “netshare,” but if you selected it, you received a message notifying you that “The item you requested is no longer available.”

This brings up many questions. Was NetShare supposed to be there in the first place? Did it slip by Apple’s AppStore guards? Did AT&T make Apple take it down? Was the word “lawsuit” possibly involved? Nobody knows. The app was also taken down from Nullriver’s site. I have asked them to comment, but no response yet.

While it was available, NetShare cost $9.99. Using a SOCKS5 proxy, the app allowed you to use your iPhone’s EDGE or 3G connection on your Mac or PC. Several users were able to grab the app in the time frame in which it was available, and they report that it works wonderfully. Anyone that did manage to get their hands on it can see a tutorial here.

UPDATE: Nullriver has issued this response to those who contacted them about the app:

We’re not quite sure why Apple took down the application yet, we’ve received no communication from Apple thus far. NetShare did not violate any of the Developer or AppStore agreements. We’re hoping we’ll get some feedback from Apple tomorrow. Sorry to all the folks that couldn’t get it in time. We’ll do our best to try to get the application back onto the AppStore if at all possible. At the very least, I would hope Apple will allow it in countries where the provider does permit tethering.

UPDATE #2: It looks like NetShare is now available again in the AppStore. Grab it while you can, because who knows when it may disappear again. Also, use at it your own risk for now; we still have no word on whether or not this violates your carrier’s terms of service.

UPDATE #3: Aaaaaand, it’s gone, again! Very early this morning, NetShare was yanked again. Nobody, including Nullriver, has heard anything from Apple or AT&T. Until we do, be sure to now download any large files or use the internet too much on a tethered computer, as it’s smart to try and stay below AT&T’s radar.

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