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Apps rejected by iTunes for being built on SC    
This topic is assigned to Aurel

Aug 08, 2017 08:42 PM
hi,

I got this message for my last 3 apps which I built as an update. They are already in the store but now iTunes does not accept them. 

Apple message;

We noticed that this app appears to be created from a commercialized template or app generation service.
Wow... This is a problem. What do we do?


Aug 09, 2017 03:22 AM

Every time Apple’s developer conference rolls around we get a smattering of changes to the App Store Review guidelines. This corpus of rules can be, in turns, opaque and explicit, and has caused a decent amount of consternation over the years for developers as they try to read into how Apple might interpret one rule or another.

I remember the crushing of apps like AppShopper and AppGratis, for instance, under the boot heel of rule 2.25, which forbid apps from “duplicating” the features of the App Store. AppShopper eventually returned,finding a way around the rule by adding social features — something which the App Store still largely lacks, by the way.

This year the big issue appears to surround rule 4.2.6, which states that “Apps created from a commercialized template or app generation service will be rejected.”

Sounds fine, right? Sure, until you start thinking about how many apps take advantage of development assistance tools like PhoneGap — or even apps that provide super-nifty app construction flows like  . Heck, even Apple has a deal with IBM that allows it to build apps for enterprise customers. These apps likely share many basic features and functions.

Essentially, there are questions about how far-reaching this rule would be when applied to the App Store. Was it purely about improving quality by reducing knock-offs? Or is it rooted in some deeper protectionist play?

Given that there was still some curiosity about how it would be applied, I did a little digging. Apple had no comment. But it rarely does, unless a rule becomes an issue in the press or among developers. I was, however, able to glean an understanding of the rule and its application by asking around.

The first thing to remember is that Apple always had a “do not clone” guideline in the document. It was never “OK” to straight-up copy an app, changing names and images and re-posting it as yours. Unfortunately, the increase in prevalence of mass production tools for apps, one-click templates and other enabling factors means that cheap junk apps have gone off the rails in the App Store over the past couple of years.

There are all kinds of schemes based around flooding the store with “templatized” apps. Some of them are clear — if a popular game like Flappy Bird or Red Ball hits the charts, there will be hundreds or thousands of clones within weeks that attempt to capitalize on the initial wave of popularity. But there are also other kinds of scams. Cloned apps that are essentially carriers for a single ad or conversion module or as a vessel for a subscription honeypot that charges the maximum amount for a sub. There are hundreds of copies of music-streaming apps that shill pirated content to make it harder to track them down one by one and allow for single-shot bursts of revenue capture before they’re found out or retired.

So, Apple decided to go on a bit of a tear and clean out the store. The new rule is tougher and more explicit in order to back up those removals.

It’s my understanding that this cleanup has resulted in hundreds of thousands (yes, multiple hundreds of thousands) of apps being removed from the store over the past year. That includes clones, but also things like apps that aren’t 64-bit compatible, apps that are unused (haven’t been downloaded in years) and other scammy boat trash.

That’s fairly straightforward, but what is the rule not about? What are the apps that seem like they could be caught up in this dragnet but that are actually probably safe? As far as I can tell, Apple is pretty clearly not trying to kill app-creation tools that allow people to customize and publish apps without knowing or writing all of the code.

That’s important, given where the industry at large is heading.

Basically, if we get to a point where you or I can build an original and customizable app that feels unique without writing a single line of code, this rule would not prevent it. Given that the coding industry (especially in the AI space) is veering toward the practice of program synthesis, this future-proofs the App Store somewhat, while not diluting Apple’s protectionist powers.

So, assembly suites or app-creation tools probably don’t have anything to fear from these new rules unless they’re in the business of pumping out nearly identical rubber-stamp apps.

One other signal that people in the “creating apps for other people” space should probably look out for is account listings. Apple will very likely not be excited about you shipping apps for other people on the App Store under your own account. Separate accounts for every entity that is responsible for its own support is probably your best-case scenario. That said, there are gray areas here where studios may publish games from many individual creators — but ask yourself, “who does the support?”

That’s probably the best way to look at it.

So the rule isn’t necessarily the doomsday scenario for app creators that it may have looked like, but it does give notice to the clone factories that Apple is trying to end that particular plague.



Aug 10, 2017 03:06 PM

To our valued customers.   The management team at MobileSoft & Seattle Clouds are aware of the recent guidelines that Apple has begun to enforce regarding the use of platforms to produce native functioning apps in the Apple App Store.  With that said, we want you to know the following reply's have been sent to Apple regarding some of the App Rejections: 

 

Seattle Cloud is not just an app generation service based on a set of templates.  Seattle Cloud allows a very deep level of customization and is a set of tools that helps manage in-app HTML based content. Seattle Cloud is primarily focused on content based apps. Customers use Seattle Cloud primarily because it is easy to manage high volume HTML content on the fly, without the need of to re-publish the app, thus reducing the overall App Store updates needed.

We will continue to keep you informed of our progress and resolution on this matter.  

Thanks for the official word. We look forward to any news you may have.


Aug 14, 2017 08:57 AM
Has this issue been resolved with Apple? I need to know as soon as possible if I can still submit apps built with SC for clients. thank u


Aug 14, 2017 09:18 AM
No, not yet.
There is a good chance there may be no resolution. Seattle clouds may have to do something on their end with the way we build apps ultimately. Starting with better templates that are for iOS 11 coming. There is nothing to help with live streaming apps.. LIVE STREAMING HUGE today. Aswell as some of the other things IOS 11 will allow natively


Aug 15, 2017 08:22 AM
  • Aug 15, 2017 at 7:36 AM
    Has anyone gotten any app in and passed through?
    Just got this from Apple and I used the actual template - just changed the graphics and the verbiage 
     From Apple
    • 4. 2 Design: Minimum Functionality

    Guideline 4.2.6 - Design - Minimum Functionality



    We noticed that this app appears to be created from a commercialized template or app generation service.

    To deliver content as a pre-packaged version of a website, consider creating a web app, which looks and behaves similar to a native app when the customer adds it to their Home screen. For more information about creating a web app, review the 
    Safari Web Content Guide
    . To offer an app that do not use a commercialized template, consider using Apple Developer tools to design and create a unique app to deliver content. For more information about developing apps for the App Store, visit the 

Something needs to be done or someone needs to tell us officially that nothing can be done. But something needs to happen. I am at a stand still here.,.


Aug 15, 2017 09:02 PM
Has anyone found a solution for this issue? My client is not paying me any more until this issue is solve.


Aug 16, 2017 01:45 AM
Hi everyone

I created an android app that I duplicated to an Ios app, I submited the ios app but it's still  In-Review (by App Builder) since the 09/08/17 is it the same problem that you're talking about ? what can I do please


Aug 16, 2017 10:11 PM
Unable to get apps published to Apple. All now getting rejected. Please tell us that this can be resolved. This is a disaster. To make things worse not had any replies to messages from the developer (Bzzapps) I feel very let down.
Try to appeal to Apple on that! Or you can find another solutions as well


Aug 17, 2017 10:25 PM
Hi Seattle Clouds Management,
Can you please let me know and your customers know if your platform can be used still to build and submit iOS apps? Thank u


Aug 18, 2017 08:38 AM
To our valued customers: 

The management team is continuing to work with Apple to find a solution to the push back they are giving the app development community, specifically those companies that are providing a stable platform service.   We are in touch with Apple and are awaiting their response on multiple questions posed.   We will keep everyone posted on our progress.   

It's our goal to make the adjustments that are needed with Apple to insure that our platform customers can continue to build apps on our platform that will comply with Apple's publishing guidelines.  

Thank You. 

MobileSoft Management Team


Aug 20, 2017 04:20 PM
 With all due respect, Please do not take the following as an effort to disparage SC in any way! I am trying to appeal to SC here and hope you guys that agree comment that you agree and show your support so they can see it! 

Here goes.. This is really Seattle Clouds fault. You guys have not changed these templates for the most part... (FOR THE MOST PART I SAID) since 2012 or 13. The templates are junk… I don't blame Apple for kicking the apps out. They're tired of cluttering up their  Apple app store with these junk template apps. If you guys had continued through the years to update the templates and make them look better and operate using more of the power of the OS by goomg along with iOS 5, six, seven, eight, nine, and 10 as  The iOS had changed,  Apple may not have gotten so fed up with the junk apps that were flooding the App Store. The apps are junk 'cause the templates are junk. 

You guys really dropped the ball. Again, I really do say this with all due respect. Not to just lash out and say mean things or anything like that. You are going to have to make these platforms work closely to the iOS of the day. We are now moving into iOS 11 and it has a wealth of new changes none of which any of these platforms can take advantage of. These apps should take advantage of multitasking, video uploads, live stream,  360 video streaming or the ability to play them in the app, and many many other native functions. The native functions of these apps are from at least iOS 5 or six and are old and outdated and I'm sure you guys know it. So now, maybe you will revamp this platform that has needed it for years. Even as a developer, this is a great  shortcut idea but the platform just isn't good.  The refreshing bar for example, has to go. Why can't there be a standard spinner that load the page at least that looks more up to date.  What about some sort of standard animation as the app page loads so it doesn't look so templateish,  wicks website builder has better functionality then this thing… Why can't the platform work more like that but natively. Just some ideas. Again, I stress that this is  i'll communication with respect. I think most of us are on this platform because we need it, we've paid into it, and it has been working for us to an extent that's far. We now need Seattle clouds to do the due diligence of making it compliant as it should've been years ago. 

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