Apple has broadened the scope of a rule that allows it to reject app submissions that compete with its own App Store.
The company has recently railed against app discovery tools like AppGratis and AppShopper, which only exist to recommend apps for users to download, mimicking the App Store's functionality.
However, it now appears, other apps that offer sharing recommendations will also no longer be accepted under Apple's guidelines, specifically rule 2.25.
One anonymous developer told Pocket-Gamer their submission had been rejected, despite tailoring the app to their understanding of the rules.
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'We stuck by the rules'
In an email sent to the developer, Apple wrote apps that "include filtering, bookmarking, searching, or sharing recommendations are not considered as significantly different from the App Store" will be rejected.
The decision surprised the developer who told Pocket-Gamer it had adhered to Apple's previous guidelines.
"Our app is primarily focused on sharing recommendations to your friends," the developer told Pocket-Gamer.
"I have not seen this rejection notice before and believe that it is a new one. We thought that basing our recommendations on sharing was suitable for Apple, as it had previously stated that if you bake in social or local into your app discovery, you would be fine."
No amends made
The rejection comes under clause 2.25 of the App Store guidelines, which states, "Apps that display apps other than your own for purchase or promotion in a manner similar to or confusing with the App Store will be rejected."
However, this text does not include any mention of sharing recommendations, filtering, bookmarking or sharing, so it appears Apple has broadened the reach of the rule, without actually amending its guidelines.