Sunday , August 20 2017

Apple might not be too keen on Android Wear for iOS, and is rejecting Pebble apps [Updated]

pebble_wrist-100026767-orig

It was a little while back now that we looked at Google preparing Android Wear for integration with iOS as well as Android. As you might expect, with Apple launching their own ‘competing’ smartwatch, perhaps they wouldn’t take too kindly to other smartwatch platforms trying to make themselves available to Apple’s users. Well, there’s no perhaps. Apple has taken to rejecting apps from the App Store just for mentioning support for Pebble, so you can imagine how that’ll go with Android Wear.

But is it as bad as it sounds?

Apple’s developer agreement forbids any mention of “any other mobile platform” in both the iOS App Store description and the metadata of the app itself. The developer of nautical navigation app SeaNavUS had a mention of Pebble in its latest update, which Apple picked up on, and summarily rejected:

We noticed that your app or its metadata contains irrelevant platform information in the app. Providing future platform compatibility plans, or other platform references, is not appropriate for the App Store.
Specifically, your app and app description declare support for thePebble Smartwatch.

It seems the easy fix is simply to remove the mention of Pebble from the app’s name or description, but that does somewhat defeat the purpose of adding Pebble support; in other words, there’s little point supporting Pebble if you can’t tell your users that you support it.

The same rules would no doubt apply to Android Wear; mentioning Android in iOS app descriptions already gets your app removed from Apple’s draconian store. One can only imagine that Android Wear would receive the exact same treatment, which would make publishing apps supporting it rather difficult. In fact, publishing the Android Wear app at all could be problem given it has ‘Android’ in its name.

Selling Android Wear to iOS users would be a big bonus for Google, being able to sell hardware to over 90% of the smartphone market. Apple would no doubt be aware of this and wanting to protect their own patch. It remains to be seen whether Android Wear will actually make it past this nonsense to get published on the App Store, but we can only hope Google will succeed.

After all, if the Pebble companion app is published, treating the Android Wear app differently would be a bit inconsistent, though Apple aren’t afraid of that either.

Update Saturday April 25: A spokesman for Apple has told Wired that the Pebble rejection (and presumably the related “irrelevant platform” zinger) was “a mistake” and that SeaNav’s update will now be accepted.

 

Chris Rowland   Editor and Publisher

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10 Comments on "Apple might not be too keen on Android Wear for iOS, and is rejecting Pebble apps [Updated]"

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butterButter
Valued Guest
butterButter
Probably going to hurt them in the future as they drive customers away with the lack of flexibility. If you’re an apple user and love pebble you’re screwed. It makes me think of Nintendo and their tight controls on what games get published on their consoles. They basically publish only their own titles over and over and use ‘out-of-date’ hardware. Look at how that went with WiiU. The sales are beyond small. People like the apple aesthetics and were drawn to their products for a few years but the market has expanded so much now with some many new competing… Read more »
Benjamin Dobell
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Benjamin Dobell
I submitted a client’s iOS app to Apple last year and had it rejected because the client’s *website* (which was accessible in app) mentioned Android. That’s right web content. I didn’t know whether to be incredibly angry about the anti-competitive behaviour, or just mortified by the fact that Apple’s engineers don’t understand that webpages are an independent entity to the app i.e. If I removed the mention of Android during submission, I could just re-add it to the website later on. The final solution I implemented I felt truly embodied the Apple ‘spirit’ – I made the server detect whether… Read more »
Level380
Valued Guest
Level380

And yet people keep developing for apple… time and time again, they keep doing this ‘crap’.

Up next, apps banned that support Pebble and not the apple watch.

Fred
Valued Guest
Fred

The sooner we get the requirement that both apple AND google support alternative app stores and installation methods on a peer level to the in-house one – the better.

It’s clear that neither can be trusted to play fair, so neither should enjoy a monopoly.

It might also force down the extreme rake off of 30%.

Level380
Valued Guest
Level380

I think Google plays fair, they support both mobile os and dont block apps like apple does. Now apple, how many apps do they have for Android and windows? None for android and basically 1 (iTunes/icloud) on windows

Fred
Valued Guest
Fred

They are better than apple (not hard) but still don’t allow installation on a peer level. No consumer should be forced to disable security options to install from outside the play store.

They also shouldn’t tie basic functionality into ‘Play services’ – selling and functionality of the phone should be separate.

Level380
Valued Guest
Level380

You can publish in the google play store, very little restrictions. Bu by your view all phones shouldn’t have any security or protection on them?

What basic functionality do you think is rolled into Play services?

Member

One reason I don’t have a crapple

Marné Prinsloo
Valued Guest
Marné Prinsloo

lol apple.

Carbs
Valued Guest
Carbs

Anti-competitive behaviour from Apple… never!

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