The saga of the EyeTV iPhone app—which riveted the nation only slightly less than the saga of Balloon Boy this weekend—is over. Version 1.0.1 has landed in the App Store, sparing users—and more specifically, AT&T—from inadvertently watching live TV and recorded programming over a 3G connection.
As you may recall from over the weekend, EyeTV developer Elgato Systems reported on Saturday that its mobile app, which works in concert with the EyeTV desktop software to stream TV to your iPhone or iPod touch via W-Fi, had gone missing from the App Store. The developer had inadvertently left some code in the 1.0 version of the app that enabled users to get streaming TV over the 3G network—something AT&T frowns upon.
Adding to the confusion, the app re-appeared on Sunday, still listed as version 1.0. Elgato said it had submitted an update to Apple that removed the offending code.
That update is now available from the App Store, and it does more than just appease AT&T. According to Elgato’s release notes, EyeTV 1.0.1 fixes a problem where audio continued to play after users left Live TV mode. For iPhone 3.1.2 users, the update also fixes a crash that occurred after zooming and changing channels. The EyeTV software is now compatible with DVB and ATSC programming guides, and it adds other general stability and performance improvements.
That kerfuffle resolved, the only remaining issue involves AT&T—as in whether the carrier will continue to insist on blocking third-party apps from streaming video over its cellular network. AT&T has its reasons for not wanting live video going out over its network—in the case of SlingPlayer Mobile, the company said it feared video streaming would use up too much network capacity, creating congestion for other users. That some of Slingbox’s apps for other mobile platforms work just fine over 3G only slightly weakens that argument.
AT&T has already reversed its position on VoIP on the cellular network, allowing Internet phone applications such as Skype to place calls via 3G after resisting the idea at first. Could the carrier change course on video-over-3G as well?