AdMob may not be locked out of iPhone applications just yet.
The Wall Street Journal reported Friday that application developers using AdMob as their in-app advertising provider are having their applications approved by Apple without incident, despite Apple's decision to change the terms of the iPhone developer agreement in a way that appeared to ban AdMob. Back in June, AdMob lashed out at Apple for making this change, saying, "this change is not in the best interests of users or developers."
The change to the agreement said that developers were not allowed to use ad networks that collected analytics data and were "owned by or affiliated with a developer or distributor of mobile devices, mobile operating systems or development environments," and was inserted into the agreement weeks after Google finalized its acquisition of AdMob. But two developers told the Journal that their AdMob-equipped ads were recently approved by Apple, meaning the company either forgot to enforce the restriction (unlikely) or has decided to back off that clause as federal regulators take a closer look at Apple's mobile-applications business.
Representatives for both companies did not respond to requests for comment on the report. The iPhone is a huge part of AdMob's business, and even if Google is allowed to play on the iPhone it now faces significant competition for iPhone ads with Apple itself, which has started rolling out in-application ads based on its iAds system.