One of the great mysteries of the App Store is why certain apps get rejected and why others don’t. Apple has let a surprising number of ripoffs and clones through the store’s iron gates, yet some developers face rejection for seemingly innocent apps.
“Before you develop your app, it’s important to become familiar with the technical, content, and design criteria that we use to review all apps,” explains Apple on a new webpage called “Common App Rejections.”
Apple has added 16 new countries and regions to the App Store’s Volume Purchasing Program today that allows businesses and schools to purchase mass quantities of a single app in just one purchase, and distribute it among multiple students or employees.
The list of new countries joining the program include Belgium, Denmark, Finland, Greece, Hong Kong, Ireland, Luxembourg, Mexico, the Netherlands, Norway, Singapore, Sweden, Switzerland, Taiwan, Turkey, and the UAE.
The addition of the new countries was announced by the App Store team via the following email:
Google has launched an official Photo Sphere app for iPhone that allows users to snap 360° panoramas and then publish them on Google Maps. It’s perfect for capturing all of the amazing places you visit, and it lets your friends share your experiences in a way that regular photos just can’t.
Apple has a long history of keeping BitTorrent apps out of the App Store. If you search for “BitTorrent” in the App Store now, only two results show up. Neither of them allow you to actually download torrents.
That’s why it was surprising when an app called Blue Downloader showed up in the store a couple of days ago. Its secret sauce is that it allows users to find and download torrents through sources chosen by its developer, Tyler Harrison, making it hard to use for illegal downloads like grabbing Expendables 3 off The Pirate Bay.
Apple approved Blue Downloader, but after Harrison made a change that allowed searching Google for torrents, the app was suddenly pulled. In an interview with Cult of Mac, Harrison explains how Apple’s response reflects its “innate fear of BitTorent” and his plans to get his app back in the store.
Since it first opened up in Julu of 2008, the App Store has paid developers over $13 billion at last count, and the marketplace hosts are over 1 million third-party programs. That makes the App Store a success by almost any measure… except discoverability.
Even today, the App Store can be extremely hard to navigate. Dominated by clones of popular apps and freemium crapware, good apps often get buried at the bottom of the App Store thanks to the App Store’s notoriously bad search engine and almost non-existent curation.
But former Apple executive Jean-Louis Gassée has a suggestion. Make the App Store more like Reddit. Let anonymous humans curate it.
Watch today’s Cult of Mac news roundup for details on how one popular group of protesters are picketing Steve Jobs and Apple itself. Plus, get info on a new Snapchat clone from Instagram, news on unlocking your iPhone and even how one KickStarter is turning MacBooks into huge touch-enabled tablets.
A few weeks back we wrote about Yo spoof Hodor, but it seems that there’s another more pressing clone out there, called Yolo, which Yo founder Or Arbel describes as “a complete fake copy of our Yo app.”
In response to Yolo, Arbel has filed a complaint with Apple, asking it to remove Yolo from the App Store since it allegedly infringes on Arbel’s copyright and trademark.