I am watching this talk.

At 9:54 the speaker says that there is GPL software in the iPhone (he says "you will see the GNU Public License").

  1. Is it true?
  2. Doesn't GPL forbids redistribution in proprietary software?
  • fwiw iOS is based off of Darwin, which is open source (altho I guess it's not GPL licensed).
    – neubert
    Mar 27, 2021 at 23:43

1 Answer 1


It is sort of True but it is not the normal GPL. (and after listening to a bit more I would note that the speaker is showing that Apple uses Free software and that is a good thing and is not commenting on legalities - which a simple reading of the question here might guess is what the OP is asking)

On iOS 14 I see

a couple of copies of the LGPL which you can link to but if you change its code then you need to release the changes.

ANd the GPL - but it is for libstdc++. This is as per http://gcc.gnu.org/onlinedocs/libstdc++/manual/license.html

The Code: GPL

The source code is distributed under the GNU General Public License version 3, with the addition under section 7 of an exception described in the “GCC Runtime Library Exception, version 3.1” as follows (or see the file COPYING.RUNTIME):


... The purpose of this Exception is to allow compilation of non-GPL (including proprietary) programs to use, in this way, the header files and runtime libraries covered by this Exception.

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