Apple Tells Paragon Its Dictionary Apps Are Spam

300 apps can be packaged into a single binary with in-app purchase API, says Apple

By on February 11th, 2013 15:21 GMT

Paragon Software Group, well known for their hard drive management tools and comprehensive dictionaries, have released a statement pointing out to some of Apple’s harsh practices regarding iOS application submissions.

The company has released a mile-long press release bashing Apple for not supporting aging hardware and iOS versions (since dictionaries don’t require a quad-core GPU), but mostly for labeling their software as “spam.”

The “spam” issue is said to stop developers like Paragon from adding new dictionary apps.

Apple reportedly told the company in an email, “We found that your app provides the same feature set as other apps you've submitted to the App Store; it simply varies the content or language.”

“We understand the word ‘spam’ can have a negative connotation. However, we use it simply to characterize a large number of very similar apps that causes the App Store to seem ‘cluttered,’” Apple told Paragon.

The Cupertino giant clarified that “Apps that replicate functionality but provide different content contribute to a sense of clutter in the App Store, hindering users' ability to find apps,” adding that “Such apps do not comply with the App Store Review Guidelines.”

Apple suggested to Paragon that they combine their apps into a single container app with an in-app purchase API to let people download the content they desire, which actually sounds like a very elegant solution.

As such, Apple requested Paragon that they “consolidate all German --> Spanish dictionary apps,” noting that “There are currently over 300 dictionary apps, and there should not be any duplicates. Apps could be consolidated by brand of dictionary or by language.”

Apple emphasized, “It may be appropriate to revise your app to use the In App Purchase API to provide content purchasing functionality.”

For its part, Paragon Software Group said it believes Apple's policies are “far too restrictive, preventing the expected, ongoing, long term support of premium content-based applications.”
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