Apple is Cracking Down on Clone Apps on the App Store

By Nitish Singh / February 27, 2019

Soon after TechCrunch reported the abundance of clone apps available on the App Store, Apple took action and removed a number of apps from the digital marketplace. There are strict policies in place concerning duplicate apps. There are not only developers that copy others, but there have also been cases of App Store developers releasing similar apps.

The TechCrunch report focused on VoIP apps, but other categories are also affected. The VoIP apps in question allow users to set up an alternate phone number. One of the primary reasons why developers clone their own apps is to include them across as many categories as possible. The more keywords and categories that an app falls under, the more accessible it will be to users. It is nothing but a means of generating more downloads on Apple’s platform.

App Store Clone Apps

Image Courtesy of TechCrunch

One of the biggest issues with Apple’s App Store is that the rules are not enforced consistently. There have been instances of developers managing to sneak in clone apps and even malware without being caught. While the tech giant did take action against a number of apps, the digital marketplace for iOS users is far from clean. There are still a large number of clone apps that are available.

Some of the examples pointed out by TechCrunch include JPEG Labs and MailPix, Inc. JPEG Labs has four different apps that allow users to print photos via physical stores. All four apps offer the exact same service but are branded differently and have different keywords. All of the apps actively insist on leaving users reviews as well. MailPix, on the other hand, is operating differently. It is buying out competing apps and turning them into clones to generate downloads.

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