updated 10:55 pm EDT, Fri September 10, 2010
Apple halts app name squatting with notices
Apple took a quiet step towards improving developer relations yet again today as it began a push back against App Store name hogs. Those who start the app submission process now have 90 days to submit the app binary before warnings and another 30 days before the process is reset. Any developer who ignores the warnings will have the app name made available to use again, Apple said in a message to iTunes Connect members.
The change could solve a chronic problem with squatting in the App Store, where competitors to a rival app or simple opportunists could start the submission process with a desirable name and deliberately leave it unfinished, preventing anyone else from using the name even if the first user has no intentions of producing code. At $99 per year to be an iOS developer, the likelihood of abuse was relatively small but still could leave those with a more authentic claim without any choice but to choose a different title.
Problems with app squatting and spam still exist on the store but are now mostly limited to those hoping to seize on the name of a familiar app. Game developers often face these problems as developers of cheat or hint guides may saturate the store such that their apps can overwhelm the original material. [via TechCrunch]