Everyone cool down! There is a lot of noise and miscommunication about what Apple has published in the updated terms and conditions of the App Store. Basically Apple is saying in the 2.25 section
“Apps that display Apps other than your own for purchase or promotion in a manner similar to or confusing with the App Store will be rejected”
Some already announced the death of App discovery services. Because we received so many questions from our users, partners and customers we decided to publish a light reaction to that episode amplified mostly by bloggers
1. The Appsfire discovery app is doing great, thank you for asking! We actually woke up fine, had our regular coffee and last time we checked our App is still in the App Store. We’ll be live until we’re not. So will everyone. We had 2 approved updates since accepting the new terms & conditions. Does that mean something? No. It means “so far, so good”.
2. The terms used by Apple are vague “similar to or confusing”. It is impossible to arrive to any sort of conclusion on whether this will have an impact or not on App discovery services like Appsfire, or any App using Ad networks, or even Facebook which is now promoting mobile apps with its app Center. It is also impossible to arrive to any sort of definitive conclusion on why Apple has decided to update those terms. The only thing that is certain is that now there are new terms Apple can used to reject some Apps, whether they are discovery apps or not. If Apple wanted to remove all app discovery services at once they would have written it loud and clear.
3. It is wrong to put on the same level the fact that Chomp has been discontinued and the fact those terms have been updated. Apple has acquired Chomp, merged it in some way in the app store and that’s all. They had to shut it down regardless of those terms. Anyone trying to see a direct relation between Chomp sunset and those new terms is a fan of sensationalism.
4. If Apple has rejected recently some updates or new App discovery app (as reported here) it does not mean any kind of systematic clamping down on App promotion services. It means some of those app may have had a problem Apple was not happy with. Those terms are generic enough to apply also to Apps in general, specially those using ad networks to make some money. You can display Apps without being An App discovery service!
5. Don’t forget the past when you observe the present: very recently Apple was supposedly starting to reject Apps using UDIDs. Well, months later, many apps using and accessing UDIDs are still Approved by Apple. A while ago Apple was fighting incentivised download: there are still many apps in the store operating those services. There was even a time when Apple said they would reject Apps using third party analytics services: did that happen? no.
What does that mean? it means NO PANIC! One thing are the terms, another is how they are applied and enforced.
Is our discovery app at risk? Everyone is at risk when working on the back of a regulated platform like the App Store, including makers of Clock and Camera apps. You need to live with that risk and assess it. But what you can’t do is cause or raise panic at every single new terms published by a platform. Should we be optimistic? No. Should we be pessimistic? No.
We just have to work with that in mind. We’ll keep doing what we do, sending millions of quality visits to the App store every months. And we shall see.
Bottom line: This news is no news for now. All go back to work!