Apple allows 'third party' browsers into app store

Apple has eased the restrictions on third-party iPhone browsers into the app store. reports that the new web browsers have submission dates ranging as far back as October, suggesting that browsers submitted for approval had been placed into a special category which has just been approved.

Previously, third-party browsers were banned from the store because Apple reserves the right to forbid third party apps which duplicate the iPhone's existing functionality. 

However, the new browswers are all based on the Safari browser - the iPhone's current default browser. Therefore, it could still be some time before rival engines such as Opera or Firefox are approved for the store.

There are also other SDK restrictions that could prevent full-featured versions of rival browsers from ever reaching the iPhone.