Apple rejects iPad app for pinch-to-expand
We've heard all kinds of reasons for rejected apps on the App Store, but this one seems new to us. An iPad app called Web Albums HD has reportedly been rejected from the App Store for including a pinch-to-expand feature in its Picasa albums viewing functionality, as reported on Apple Insider. The developers allegedly hand-coded a pinch-to-expand feature for their galleries to match Apple's official photo app, but were told by App Store editors that the feature was "associated solely with Apple applications." Interesting. Not actually true, as "pinch-to-expand" is really a feature that's common to many touchscreen interfaces, even if this photo gallery-browsing instance is unique. But apparently Apple feels it has laid claim, and so no other apps on the store get to use it.
The folks behind Web Albums HD promptly removed the feature, and their app was subsequently approved on the store (which is why it's there now), but before you go spend the $2.99, know that even the devs think that they've "ended up having an inferior product" out there. Of course Apple has definitely limited the functionality of apps in the past by disallowing certain APIs, but now it seems replicated functionality of something they deem Apple's domain can also fall under their banhammer.
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