9to5 Mac versions of the iPhone OS and iTunes will allow parents to chose which age group of App Store apps the device is unable to access. It's separated into four levels: 4+, 9+, 12+, and 17+The new feature should mean that some of the riskier apps will start getting approved into the app store, as Apple told one rejected developer. Screenshot after the break.
Apple issued a public apology yesterday after briefly allowing a 99-cent app by the name of Baby Shaker into the App Store. It was in the store only a short time before complaints from users who found the app offensive led to the app being removed. The app displayed an animation of a crying baby, with the instructions to listen to it for as long as possible before shaking the phone to make the crying stop.
Marco Arment said on his blog on Monday that Apple has blocked Instapaper Pro 1.4 due to his use of an image of the iPhone as within the app's interface. Apple denied the update entry into the App Store, citing the iPhone as a trademark image:
We’ve reviewed Instapaper Pro and determined that we cannot post this version of your iPhone application to the App Store because of an Apple trademark image
Apple's App Store approval policies have been strange in the past, but this is bordering on the idiotic. It was reported earlier today that Tweetie 1.3, an update to the Twitter client of choice for the iPhone Alley staff, was rejected from the App Store earlier today. The grounds? Displaying "offensive language" in the Twitter trends search view.
After waiting and waiting for an official Sirius/XM radio app for the iPhone, we were happy to hear that the guys at NiceMac were filling the void with their StarPlayr client. But now, with rumors of an official Sirius/XM radio app circulating and StarPlayr stuck in App Store approval limbo, they are giving up and shutting StarPlayr down for good. They're even abandoning their WinMo client.
Most developers have enough to worry about from just trying to get their app approved by Apple. Father Paolo Padrini, a priest in Italy, was fortunate enough to get his app approved by the Vatican. His app, iBreviary, was approved by the Vatican's Pontifical Council for Social Communications. During a free trial period, it pulled i over 10,000 downloads. Now that it's been approved, he'll be charging $0.99, with proceeds going to charity. [via TechRadar]
The unpredictably lengthy app review process is continuing to frustrate developers. Perry Hart, creator of AutoMangle, says the system is "inadequate and down right amateur. He had hoped to release his latest app, ZombieMangle, in time for the holidays, but was instead given a vague letter from Apple that read "unexpected additional time for review." This isn't the first time we've heard about this, but it is particularly inconvenient during the holidays. [via MacNN]
A pre-holiday swell of App Store submissions from developers is causing uncharacteristic slowness, Apple says. Several developers who submitted their apps to Apple in the past few days have got reply emails back from the company, warning them that their app may not make it into the App Store before Christmas. As a result, some developers are choosing to hold off on releasing new apps or major updates until Macworld, using the opportunity to add finishing touches.
Apple has once again rejected an app that probably should have gotten in to the App Store, but this time it may be due to just a simple misunderstanding. The app Peeps from Plausable Labs Cooperative would have let users visually organize their contacts. One method it provided for this included thumbing through a coverflow-like interface. Apple, thinking that the coverflow implemented in the app was created using their unpublished (and off-limits) CoverFlow API set, rejected the app.
Apple's policies regarding App Store admission are becoming more and more difficult to figure out. Just recently they gave the O.K. to developers of BdEmailer [App Store, $0.99], and email app for the iPhone. What's weird about that? Well, it's claim to fame is that it's "the first wide email iPhone app that supports client SMTP." In other words, it completely duplicates the exact function of Apple's own Mail.app.