One of the most oft-requested new features in the iPhone 3G is modem access/tethering. Now that it has a chip capable of 3G data downloads, it stands to reason that you'd be able to connect your iPhone 3G to a MacBook and use it as a modem. But you can't. Even though AT&T has data tethering options for its other smartphones (granted, it costs an extra US$30 per month) it doesn't offer a similar feature with the iPhone. Why?
Enter NullRiver, Inc. the developer of the pre-eminent post-jailbreakering tool Installer.app. They briefly slipped a data tethering application called NetShare into the App Store. According to a post at MacRumors NetShare allowed you to share your iPhone's EDGE or 3G Internet connection with your computer by providing a SOCKS5 proxy for your computer to connect to.
The application was summarily removed from the App Store some time Thursday afternoon. Although it still can be found by searching in iTunes, clicking on the App's link throws an error message that reads "the item you've requested is not currently available in the US store." The NullRiver product page now just says "we're updating our site."
I wonder if AT&T pressured Apple into removing the app.
(Tip and Photo: MacRumors)
Update 8/1: NullRiver has posted two updates on their Web site under the headline NetShare, where did it go?
Update 2: Apple has taken it down again, with no explanation yet again.
Update: NetShare is now back up and available from the AppStore! We're not quite sure why Apple took down the NetShare 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 today. 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, we hope Apple will allow it to be used in countries where the provider does permit tethering.