Apple has removed VLC Player from the App Store listings. This comes as a heavy blow to those who relied on the software to play video formats not supported by Apple devices, including .flv (Flash) files.
One of the original creators of the VLC open-source platform announced
the app’s removal on the Planet VideoLAN blog, saying, “On January 7th, I was notified by an Apple attorney that VLC media player had been removed from the App Store.”
“That is how I was able to break the news first. However as can be expected from an attoryney [sic], there was not really any explanation.
Rémi Denis-Courmont claims even he doesn’t know for sure why Apple removed VLC, and believes the company “will probably never state the truth.”
He acknowledges that Apple had already removed VLC from the "old" Mac Store for computers “about 4 years ago, at a time when VLC was one of the most popular applications, and I am yet to learn the reasons why.”
Rémi also informs that, two months before they had pulled the application, Apple received his copyright notification, therefore “it seems dubious that my well-publicized notification from last october is the root cause of the removal. It is nevertheless the reason why I was learnt directly from Apple that VLC was removed,” he confirms.
And while “Apple had the power and plenty of time (2 months) to adjust and clarified the terms of the App Store […] it is Apple's choice and business decision, therefore Apple would have no reasons to expedite the process,” Rémi notes.
The developer concludes: “All in all, we will probably never know the truth. But I am inclined to believe what Eben Mogel, from the Software Freedom Law Center, foretold me 2 months ago: Apple would remove VLC simply because it cannot stand software distributed under the GPL on its stores.”