Windows Mobile's App Sharing Feature Isn't Really Sharing At AllS

Remember how the Windows Mobile App Marketplace was going to let you share apps with up to five phones at no additional cost? Well, Microsoft has a very liberal definition of the word "sharing."

Turns out it's just a feature to let you transfer apps to a new phone when you replace your last. That's a nice little feature, don't get us wrong, but it's definitely not the same thing as allowing customers to share apps with friends and family. To quoth Microsoft:

As outlined in the terms of use for Windows Marketplace for Mobile, this ability is limited to phones owned by the person who purchased the application. Application sharing is not permitted. We believe people will find a high value in mobile applications they purchase through the Windows Marketplace, and we will also be offering a refund policy that will make it easier to shop for applications with confidence.

This is quite a bit of backpedaling from the original statement, in which Microsoft senior planner Daniel Bouie said, "We feel comfortable that using our LiveID system to help connect products to five devices is a great balance of the needs of both developers and end users." Sucks for us, but Microsoft has to avoid pissing off developers to get their Marketplace going. [Boy Genius Report]