Every now and again an iPhone app is released that causes such controversy it is brought to our attention in the national media. Apple are normally very quick to react and either remove the app altogether or force the developer to amend it rapidly. Remember Pepsi’s AMP Up Before You Score app?
Controversial iPhone apps can be removed for any number of reasons such as unacceptable content, copyright infringement or teaching certain material which is illegal in some territories such as weapon manuals.
Here’s a list of seven recent apps which caused great controversy when iPhone users and the general public heard about them.
Content in Question.
1. The Sun Newspaper App - The Sun newspaper in the UK is a very popular tabloid, however, it often features scantily clad women
and ‘inappropriate’ articles. Its center page often carries paparazzi snaps of nude or near nude celebrities and it was for this reason that Apple showed the developers the door.
2. Me So Holy - This app caused outrage as it gave users the ability to deface religious paintings and figures. Users simply selected a religion and then took a snap of themselves. The user’s face would then appear instead of that of a religious figure. So for example, Christianity would have Jesus with the user’s face as you can see in the screenshot. Definitely one of the most controversial iPhone apps ever.
- Eucalyptus - This app gave access to numerous books from the Project Gutenburg libraries which was fantastic. However, despite having gotten through the Apple screening phase, the app was soon removed as it gave access to the Kama Sutra!
Think of the Children!
Bang Bang - This app bit the bullet when it was brought to the fore by anti-gun activists. It featured numerous firearms from assault rifles to glocks and allowed the user to operate them with a great deal of realism using the touchscreen. You had to reload, switch the safety off, cock and fire the ‘weapon’.
5. iSnort - Perhaps understandably an app whereby the sole purpose is to mimic snorting lines of cocaine raised concerns amongst drug charities and parents. Apple, however late, removed the app.
6. Relapse - Intended to be released alongside Eminem’s new album, the sole objective of the game is to play as the rap singer rampaging through the streets in the early hours of the morning using a variety of weapons. The app wasn’t released at the album launch as intended and I don’t think it ever will be given the controversy that surrounded it.
7. I Am Rich! - Banned for the sole purpose of being an affront to the word ‘application’. Because, well, it did nothing. This app was
perhaps a stroke of genius by a German developer. He designed a simple app which has a red gem floating in the middle of the screen and nothing more. He then uploaded it to the App Store and somehow got through the Apple screening phase. He then put a price tag of $999.99 on it for any interested parties. There were. Eight people bought the app making the sly developer eight thousand dollars. Not bad for what must have taken him less than half an hour.
I’m sure it wont be long before another controversial iPhone app is released to cause a stir amongst the fan boy community!
Developers who want to make sure their apps avoid the same fate as these apps should check out How to Avoid Getting your iPhone App Banned.