Two days ago we reported Toyota launched a new advertising campaign in the Cydia through ModMyi’s repository based on a custom theme iPhone users could install on their jailbroken devices. The theme promoted Toyota’s affiliate Scion 2011 tC vehicle, with graphics on screen depicting the car in various elements of the standard iOS interface. Toyota didn’t directly get in touch with Cydia’s creator Jay Freeman to launch the ad campaign, which was organized and hosted through ModMyi’s repository. Many saw the advertising campaign as the first step for large companies like Toyota to avoid the App Store altogether to promote their brands and products on the iPhone. With 10-15 million jailbroken devices out there, launching an ad campaign in Cydia through a third-party repo must have sounded like the perfect opportunity to Toyota.
Too bad Apple didn’t think that was a really good idea. In fact, Toyota was apparently asked by Apple to take the theme down, and Toyota accepted to ”maintain their good relationship with Apple.” The campaign had been in the works since April 2010 with Toyota and advertising agency Velti.
Apple also heard about the theme and ad campaign. I received a call from our contact at Velti this evening as well as an email asking me to please take the theme out of Cydia. On the phone, he explained Apple had contacted Toyota and requested they remove the theme and stop the advertising campaign. They (Velti) in turn contacted me relaying the message.
Apple doesn’t obviously like jailbreak (they called it “illegal” before the Digital Copyright Millennium Act updated its rules and observed jailbreaking a phone is in a consumer’s rights), and they’re taking another hard stance against those who promote or support (or make business with) Cydia in any way. Sorry Toyota, but you’ll have to take that theme down.