Apple has taken an unusual step in relaxing the rules on how Apple iTunes App Store apps are developed, making significant changes in the iOS Developer Program licence.
Available to developers, Apple has published a complete set of guidelines that will help determine an app's eligibility for inclusion in the Apple iTunes App Store. Meanwhile, a new App Review Board, promises to give developers "the opportunity to appeal the rejection of an application if [they] believe that the functionality or technical implementation was misunderstood."
The full Apple press release follows.
"Statement by Apple on App Store Review Guidelines
The App Store has revolutionised the way mobile applications are developed and distributed. With over 250,000 apps and 6.5 billion downloads, the App Store has become the world’s largest mobile application platform and App Store developers have earned over one billion dollars from the sales of their apps.
We are continually trying to make the App Store even better. We have listened to our developers and taken much of their feedback to heart. Based on their input, today we are making some important changes to our iOS Developer Program licence in sections 3.3.1, 3.3.2 and 3.3.9 to relax some restrictions we put in place earlier this year.
In particular, we are relaxing all restrictions on the development tools used to create iOS apps, as long as the resulting apps do not download any code. This should give developers the flexibility they want, while preserving the security we need.
In addition, for the first time we are publishing the App Store Review Guidelines to help developers understand how we review submitted apps. We hope it will make us more transparent and help our developers create even more successful apps for the App Store.
The App Store is perhaps the most important milestone in the history of mobile software. Working together with our developers, we will continue to surprise and delight our users with innovative mobile apps."
Apple's SDK and iTunes App Store rules have until now prohibited apps that exploit certain iPhone features. Previously, Apple had changed Section 3.3.1 of its developer program license agreement, insisting software used to create apps must be written to run directly on the iPhone system, without an intermediary layer of software. The move effectively banned Flash from the iPhone.
Apple's news has sent Adobe shares up 8.36 per cent to $31.76 in recent trading today.