In a new development, Apple is rejecting applications that have the price mentioned in the name, icons, screenshots, or previews. It now throws an error message to all developers that try to add the price in the above mentioned metadata categories while submitting an app for review.
Many app developers like to position ‘Free’ as their big USP, and mention it in their app name, and have it in their logo as well. However, according to VentureBeat, Apple is now rejecting applications that come with the word ‘Free’ or mention the price of the app in any way. The report states that Apple has gradually started this practice of rejection since last month, stopping developers from using the price value in the title, icons, screenshots, and previews. When a developer attempts to submit an application for review, and the title has the word ‘free’ or ‘discount’ in it, the developer will receive as error message explaining that the price is not allowed to be a part of the metadata. Instead, Apple encourages developers to highlight the price in the description.
The error message reads, “Your app’s name, icons, screenshots, or previews to be displayed on the App Store include references to your app’s price, which is not considered a part of these metadata items. Please remove any references to your app’s price from your app’s name, including any references to your app being free or discounted. If you would like to advertise changes to your app’s price, it would be appropriate to include this information in the app description. Changes to your app’s price can be made in the Pricing and Availability section of iTunes Connect.”
An Apple spokesperson has also confirmed this change, but hasn’t shed light on the reason for policy change. There is no clarity on whether apps that exist with price titles in the App Store will be asked to change their names, or the rule is applicable on the new ones.
Apple has been cleaning up the App Store recently, and last year it even announced that it would remove dormant or problematic apps from the Store, and went on to remove 50,000 apps from the App Store in October.