Freedom to Tinker: ‘DRM for Chargers: Possibly Good for Users’

Ed Felten on Apple’s patent application for a method of tying gadgets to chargers:

Whether this is good for consumers depends on how a device comes to be authorized. If “authorized” just means “sold or licensed by Apple” then consumers won’t benefit — the only effect will be to give Apple control of the aftermarket for replacement chargers.

But if the iPod’s owner decides which chargers are authorized, then this might be a useful anti-theft measure — there’s little point in stealing an iPod if you won’t be able to recharge it.

Thursday, 2 August 2007