Earlier this month, DailyTech reported that Apple has been pretty restrictive when it comes to accepting certain applications into its App Store ecosystem. The company most prominently rejected an application which it claimed provided functionality too similar to existing Apple applications.
The backlash that Apple received after the public airing of the rejection notices now appears to have set off another round of restrictions from Cupertino. According to Mac Rumors, developers receiving rejection notices from Apple can no longer talk about why their application was rejected. Rejection notices now bear the following text in bold letters:
THE INFORMATION CONTAINED IN THIS MESSAGE IS UNDER NON-DISCLOSURE
So developers who now spend time developing for Apple's iPhone and iPod touch now run the risk of having their application rejected plus they now cannot talk about their rejections with anyone else.
This move comes not long after the Podcaster application was rejected by Apple. Podcaster was to provide new functionality to the iPhone and iPod touch by allowing the subscription, management, and streaming of podcasts directly to the portable device instead of having to be tethered to a desktop or notebook. Apple, wary of such a powerful program being available on the App Store, provided the following statement in a rejection letter:
Since Podcaster assists in the distribution of podcasts, it duplicates the functionality of the Podcast section of iTunes.
Naturally, many in the iPhone/iPod touch development community as well as Mac enthusiasts were upset about the decision. The rejection notice from Apple was posted all around the web and for the most part, Apple's actions were seen as a negative move that would discourage developers from providing applications to consumers out of fear of having their hard work rejected due to reasons that only Apple deemed appropriate.
Apple’s move to stifle the bad press from its App Store rejections may have erred by going the NDA route with rejection notices. If the response from the Mac community is any indication, this move may be even more frowned upon.