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Devs slam Apple for removing ‘wrong’ apps in gambling crackdown

A THRONG OF DEVELOPERS have slammed tech giant Apple for wrongfully removing apps from the App Store in its crackdown on gambling content.

A number of developers took to Twitter late on Thursday to complain that their apps, some of which said had nothing to do with gambling, were booted from the App Store/

Those affected by the purge include a gif-sharing service, a platform for sending clips of Xbox games to friends and even a Polish magazine.

A Poker simulation game called THTouch was also culled. Its developer, Pit Garbe, said: “[It] doesn’t matter whether it involves money or is just a simulation… gambling apps by individual developers are now banned.”

The developers of the affected apps were notified via a message from Apple that it was removing gambling-related apps in an effort to “reduce fraudulent activity… and comply with government requests to address illegal online gambling activity”. 

According to reports, Apple is working to bring some of the accidentally-purged apps back online.

“Apple says these apps contain gambling but they don’t reveal how they have detected this,” said Simon Stovring, a Copenhagen-based developer behind a gif-sharing app called Gifferent.

“It seems like an unfortunate but honest mistake,” he told the BBC.

Stovring said about 10 fellow developers had contacted him to say that they too had been hit by the ban.

Co-owner of Polish app iMagazine, Wojtek Pietrusiewicz, said it had also been “caught in the crossfire” after he saw his app, which has thousands of users, taken down for a total of 15 hours.

The affected developers believe they might have been affected by the purge unnecessarily because their apps contain access to the wider internet, which allows users to potentially click through to gambling content.

While it didn’t cause any serious issues, Pietrusiewicz said it did result in “one angry comment from a reader and a lot of stress for our team”. µ

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Source : Inquirer

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