Apple's Sexy App Purge Was Just the Beginning

The Great App Store Purge of 2010 continues. They came for the sexy apps, and other apps said nothing. Now, according to some developers, they're coming for pre-fabbed apps—like RSS apps built using ready-set-go templates from app-building services.

Specifically, they're blocking new submissions of apps that are basically just re-packaged RSS feeds or business cards. What makes this purge not-at-all outrageous is that they're not clearing out apps they've already approved, and they're at least telling app-building services like AppMakr what they need to change in order to make themselves worthy of the App Store: adding features like push notifications, offline access and in-app purchases.

They're pushing developers to make their apps useful and different, in other words, rather than taking up virtual shelf space for goods that could be web apps. If Apple's going to be policing App Store submissions for more than mere maliciousness—which seems like it's going to be the case for the immediate future—it's the kind of policing you'd want them to do, at least in theory. A cookie-cutter app is a cookie-cutter app, a determination that's far less inscrutable than the process to decide what's too prurient to be sold.

But it's clear now that the sex app purge was apparently just the beginning of a larger process to clean up the App Store. Apple's eminently concerned with the App Store's perception as a huckster-y bazaar, and the reflection of that image upon the Apple brand itself. Tacky, shitty apps populating the store are inevitably stains on that glossy Apple logo, and Apple's just starting to wipe them up. The purge will burn hotter before it's over. [TechCrunch]