After submitting a minor .1 bug fix for Airfoil Speakers Touch 1.0.1 [Free - iTunes link] for iPhone and iPod touch, longtime Mac developers Rogue Amoeba waited for what they assumed would be a routine App Store review. Three and a half months, three rejections, and the unsuccessful intervention of a champion at Apple, the app is finally in the store, but the developer has decided the process is too odorous to continue with the iPhone platform.
Don't stop us just because you've heard this before over and over again.
The issue this time was Rogue Amoeba discovering the type of Mac and exact application that was being used as audio source, and displaying the corresponding Mac OS X-provided image of the machine and icon for the app.
Though standard -- intended -- behavior on the Mac, Apple's App Store policy branded this a trademark violation and they requested it be changed. Rogue Amoeba assumed the request was erroneous and tried resubmitting, tried escalating via email, even had a champion inside Apple try help get it through. In the end, the App Store policy was an immovable object, and Rogue Amoeba had to remove the Mac and app icon images. Airfoil Speakers Touch 1.0.1 was then approved and placed in the app store.
(And during the whole process, Airfoil Speakers Touch 1.0, buggy as it was, and using the exact same artwork Apple had issue with in 1.0.1 was left untouched in the App Store for users to download and use).
In the future, we hope that developers will be allowed to ship software without needing Apple’s approval at all, the same way we do on Mac OS X. We hope the App Store will get better, review times will be shorter, reviews will be more intelligent, and that we can all focus on making great software. Right now, however, the platform is a mess.
The chorus of disenchanted developers is growing and we’re adding our voices as well. Rogue Amoeba no longer has any plans for additional iPhone applications, and updates to our existing iPhone applications will likely be rare. The iPhone platform had great promise, but that promise is not enough, so we’re focusing on the Mac.
Add our voice to the chorus: fix. this. More after the break...