Wednesday, September 28, 2011 [Tweets] [Favorites]

Drift Rejected From the App Store

Devin Chalmers (via Manton Reece):

Eventually it became clear that, from the reviewers' perspective, there was a problem with that, at all: it wasn't the (already redacted) signup links that we were being rejected for, but any GitHub link. At all.

This is the situation that I outlined in February, with a third-party client for a service. It’s OK to make a Twitter client because Twitter is free, but GitHub has both free and paid plans, so you can’t make a GitHub app unless you support in-app purchase. And that’s only possible for an app developed by GitHub itself, not for a third-party developer using its API.

It’s a shame that Apple won’t allow these apps to exist except in crippled form. And it’s also a shame that they won’t come out and say that that’s their policy. The reviewers and appeals board tossed Chalmers around for two months, despite the fact that, as I linked to here, Steve Jobs himself said that the in-app purchase requirement was for content, not software as a service (SaaS).

6 Comments

I had the exact same experience with an app that I built. Our company has a paid service for users and a free service for paramedics. We built an app for the medics but could not link to our site AT ALL because our site ALSO has a paid service for a totally separate class of users. It isn't even possible for us to support in-app purchases... there's nothing to sell to the users of our app. Our company just so happens to have other other customers.

The reviewers cannot be reasoned with and you are strongly discouraged from speaking out.

"The reviewers and appeals board tossed Chalmers around for two months, despite the fact that, as I linked to here, Steve Jobs himself said that the in-app purchase requirement was for content, not software as a service"

Well, that's the beauty of the velvet rope strategy, no? It doesn't matter what the "official club policy" says. It just matters what the bouncers say. And since the bouncers do what the club privately tells them to do, it all lets the club get away with admission practices that would be either illegal or negatively perceived if widely publicized.

Well, if Apple's cut on in-app purchases were lower than the 30% on apps, then everyone would make free apps that require an in-app Purchase to function.

And if clients for paying olnile services were allowed, everyone would make free apps that require payment on a web site to function, and Apple would host and serve thousands of apps without getting a dime for it.

And good luck drawing the line reliably between ‘legit’ apps and those who try and cheat the system.

Ooops, sorry, I didn't mean to post the above anonymously.

Note, that this "system" exists solely because Apple feels they are entitled to 30% of all economic activity that occurs on their devices. That was their priority. They could have built their system any way they want with any rules they want.

In other words, their hands can't possibly be tied by the rules because they write the rules.

“Feel they are entitled to”. My, if that's not trolling. They provide a service to app developers. They write the rules, but ot all of them. Especially not the ones that define what costs them money, like online storage, bandwidth, payment processing fees, salaries, etc.

Anyone has numbers on what percentage game console manufacturers or Amazon take on sales, regular or Xbox Live-style, and what their other conditions are?

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