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Phil Schiller responds to App Store complaints

updated 10:15 am EDT, Wed August 12, 2009

Schiller on Google Voice

Apple's senior VP for worldwide product marketing, Phil Schiller, has taken the unusual step of personally responding to a blog post criticizing the App Store. The blogger, Steven Frank, became irate over Apple's rejection of Google Voice apps, calling it the "final straw" in a series of problems and deserving of a boycott. Apple needs to work on maintaining consistent rejection policies, according to Frank, and telling developers what can be done to gain approval.

Schiller has responded by insisting that Apple is listening to feedback, and working to evolve the App Store with those reactions in mind. The executive has also clarified a confusion over e-book apps, noting that the company has not taken a broad stance against them. A recent rejection was based on the possibility of iPhone-to-iPhone sharing, which could have allowed copyright infringement, says Schiller. Speculation held that Apple was preparing the way for its own e-book store.

by MacNN Staff



  1. slider

    Joined: Dec 1969


    Number One Problem

    They are not communicating. Perhaps this is a spill-over from Apple's inherent secrecy. Regardless, Apple needs to rethink how they interact with developers of the platform as Apple is the gatekeeper.

    It is the very silence that has driven speculation such as some kind of turf war between Google and Apple (which in my opinion has been blown out of proportion as there's nothing to substantiate this). But, if Apple was more forth coming as to the why, then such 'rumors' would not be whipped into a frenzy.

    I believe Apple is currently overwhelmed with the app store and believe they are trying to address it. There are a host of other considerations that I think Apple is trying to wrestle with, such as legal issue, as in the offender locator app and the copyright issues (a good example of how a banning of an app was blown out of proportion), customer issues, such as the recent banning of a developer (whom other had indicated produced more spam than anything else), trying to determine what is and what is not appropriate, such as adult content (which Apple is trying to addressed with an 17 rating), etc. What is totally acceptable for one person can be offensive to another. Wrong or right someone has to find a middle ground. The alternative is to choose sides, but I think Apple is trying to make it work, ie provide a rating system verse just barring any apps that could be considered offensive.

    What does it all come down to again? Apple needs a clear set of rules that everyone can follow. Apple needs to explain clearly why an app was reject. And, Apple needs to provide some sort of appeal process, perhaps the creation of a 3rd party panel (or some better idea).

    Who knows, by next year or the year after, maybe the industry will change to the point were it's not just one app store, but several. Apple will need to compete against Android, WebOS, etc. As the iPhone will most like be able to run multiple apps in the background, perhaps Apple will no longer feel the need to approve what apps can run on the iPhone as it becomes more and more like a full desktop OS. It is not uncommon for something that is an issue today, to be completely moot in the near future.

  1. testudo

    Joined: Dec 1969


    just imagine...

    Wow, look at all the trials Apple is going through, as slider recaps, all of which is completely of their own doing and insistence.

    Apple could have just saved themselves the headaches, bad press, etc, and just did what everyone else has done with computing platforms. Just allow every app and let the market decide, rather than having a set of unknown and moving rules and deciding which developer's work should be allowed on their precious platform and which shouldn't.

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