Why are Apple’s ‘Free’ Apps No Longer Free?


It has been reported that Apple is working ’cleaning’ applications on its App Store and Mac Store. Now you will not be allowed to download ‘free’ apps, you would rather have to pay to ‘Get’ them! In the process, the company may take down almost 200,000 outdated iPhone and iPad applications that are not optimized for newer Apple devices, after the removal of about 47,000 apps from the App store earlier this year.

Alongside this, Apple is now on the verge of restricting the way developers add the description to the apps they develop. According to Venture Beat, now every app, either new or updated, that has the word ‘free’ in its name will be rejected. The reports state that the developers must note the following:

  • “Your app’s name, icons, screenshots, or previews to be displayed on the App Store include references to your app’s price”
  • “Please remove any references to your app’s price from your app’s name, including any references to your app being free or discounted.”

Although Apple has not yet fully confirmed the news yet with this shift, the company plans to crack down the low-quality apps from its App store, for better user experience and refine its store from any such app that may contain a freeware containing a virus, or apps that lure the users into paying for app, despite being downloaded as ‘free’.

Since we cannot predict the fate of apps on the App store because no comments on the new iOS 11 from the company has been officially posted, but the beta version of the software seems to indicate the probable changes that are yet to come.

What are the reasons behind the crackdown?

  1. One of the main reasons behind the removal of apps is the terminated of account of Bogdan Popescu- a developer who is alleged for manipulation. The company reviewed and officially declared the removal with the following detailed statement:

“Almost 1,000 fraudulent reviews were detected across two accounts and 25 apps for this developer so we removed their apps and accounts from the App Store.

A warning was given in advance of the termination and attempts were made to resolve the issue with the developer but they were unsuccessful. We will terminate developer accounts for ratings and review fraud, including actions designed to hurt other developers. This is a responsibility that we take very seriously, on behalf of all of our customers and developers.”

One of the company’s representatives reported that Apple may entirely remove the category of antivirus and antimalware from its iOS Store because of the reports of the number of manipulative applications being uploaded by the developers.

  1. In the year 2016, Apple commented that “Quality is extremely important to us. We know that many of you work hard to build innovative apps and update your apps on the App Store with new content and features. However, there are also apps on the App Store that no longer function as intended or follow current review guidelines and others which have not been supported with compatibility updates for a long time. We are implementing an ongoing process of evaluating apps for these issues, notifying their developers, and removing problematic and abandoned apps from the App Store”

It may also be noted by the developers that in case the application you developed crashes once tested by the company, Apple would simply pull it off from the iOS App Store.

Apple has confirmed the new policy but the enforcement date of the policy on the existing applications having the word ’free’ in its title will be performed.

Which Apps and Services are being pulled out?

Users report any app that they find to be a Scam. This helps the company cross check the App before removing it.

There are various apps and services that have been removed from the iOS store, few of them that Apple has, or is planning to crack down recently are as under:

  • ‘Free’ Apps
  • 3rd party Silicone Bands
  • Antivirus apps
  • App-Discovery Services
  • Apps that don’t show Ads
  • Butt Dialing (AAPL)
  • Developers using SDK’s like Rollout for updating their Apps
  • Fake shopping Apps
  • Fraudulent Apps
  • Games with Serial codes
  • Screenshot Scams

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Why are Apple’s ‘Free’ Apps No Longer Free?

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