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It's developers like Jalada GmbH that will eventually kill the Mac App Store

Nobody wants to give their money to developers who are willfully engaging in content theft and underhanded sales techniques, but that's exactly what Hamburg-based Jalada GmbH is.

If you check out the full list of software currently available from Jalada, you'll find a whopping 18 apps in all. The company offers three basic language translators in slightly different wrapping, all priced at US$9.99; three photo editors with horrible reviews, priced at as much as $59.99; and a trio of what are essentially rich text editors. It's basic stuff that anyone can find online (or already on their computer) for free.

This is the kind of crapware that makes App Store shoppers roll their eyes, but there's not much you can do about banning overpriced, underperforming apps from a marketplace like Apple's. What you can do, however, is notice when such a developer crosses the line from simply selling trash, to targeting other developers and exploiting popular IPs to push garbage to trusting consumers.

Yoshi!

This is a game called Carry on Farming by Jalada GmbH. I probably don't have to point out what I'm about to, but that dinosaur is Yoshi. And just to make sure we all know it wasn't just a simple mix-up, Jalada published another game a few months later with Yoshi again in a starring role.

Ignoring the fact that Yoshi is one of the most recognizable characters in all of gaming, and that the IP owner is one of the most powerful companies in interactive entertainment, Jalada is blatantly stealing copyrighted content.

This isn't the Google Play store we're talking about here; this is supposed to be Apple's "walled garden," where this kind of stuff doesn't happen, and if it does, it's taken care of expeditiously. These apps have been sitting on the App Store since early 2011.

Textual

Textual is a well-known IRC client for OS X developed by Michael Morris. It launched along with the Mac App Store and has been a mainstay ever since. It's been updated consistently; it offers a huge list of features; and it's considered to be one of the best IRC clients currently available for Mac users.

Rather than sell newer versions of Textual as standalone apps, Morris has kept all Textual updates free, so you won't find a Textual 2 or Textual 3 on the App Store. You will, however, find Textual 4.

On October 18, 2013, Morris pushed an update that brought Textual up to version 3.2.3. The next day, Jalada launched its third rich text editor on the App Store. The company named the app Textual 4. It was the first time the name "Textual" appeared on any of Jalada's apps, and Textual 4 launched in version 4.1.

Note: A version of a word processing app called "Jalada Textual" was sold in 2009 via an old version of the Jalada website. There was never a "Textual 2" or "Textual 3" from the company, and no apparent updates to the original Textual app until Jalada launched Textual 4 in the App Store. It seems a bit unlikely, but it is possible that Jalada had no knowledge of the IRC app. I'll leave it to you to make up your own mind on that.

Morris's Textual eventually reached version 4.0 about a month and a half later, and at the moment a Mac App Store search for the app brings up both Textual and Textual 4, and both apps are in version 4.x.x.

The App Store experience

Things like this simply can't continue if the App Store is to continue to thrive. Digital shoppers are willing to spend far more of their money on Apple's marketplaces as compared to Google's because it's (in theory) policed to keep unscrupulous developers -- like Jalada GmbH -- out.

If you can't search for a popular app or purchase a game with an instantly recognizable game character without the possibility of a fraudulent company collecting the revenue, the system has a serious flaw. Until Apple stops turning a blind eye to these types of situations, the walled garden has a gaping hole.

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