Another to file in the “Apple changes its mind a lot about app approvals” bin. A developer created a Mac app to use Notification Center to show what iTunes 11 or Spotify was playing. Handy, cool, useful. The app was approved, but when an update was submitted—allegedly to just allow people to turn off the menubar icon—Apple rejected it.
The story comes via The Loop:
Farouk told The Loop that Apple rejected an update to the app this week claiming that showing the “iTunes ‘now playing’ or track changes is a misuse of Notification Center.”
Here’s the funny thing. The app was already approved and in the Mac App Store for some time with the notification functionality working perfectly. Apple rejected the app when Farouk submitted an update adding a preference to remove the menu bar icon. No changes were made to the notification functionality in the update, according to Farouk.
The strangest thing, maybe not really given Apple’s track record with app approvals, is that the app is still in the Mac App Store—Listening To—Jim Dalrymple bought the app last night and said it still works fine.
Yes, this goes to the heart of why people jailbreak devices. That Apple’s closed system for app approvals is both a blessing and a curse. It’s great when really bad or malicious apps are kept out of the store, not so great when really good apps or features are blocked because Apple doesn’t like them.
In the end, we either choose to opt in…or not.