New, arbitrary App Store rejection reason: "Minimum User Functionality"

So say you’re really into Jersey Shore. And you want to make a phone like the duck phone in the show. And you’re like “Why not make an app that quacks like a duck and makes your phone quack like a duck?” Heck, it’s a free country, as far as you can tell. This is what our grandfathers fought the Battle of the Bulge for, right?

Well the cheese-eaters at Apple will say that your dumb quack app “contains minimal user functionality” and, as a result, deny your application to rock out on their App Store.

Friends, that’s exactly what happened to Nick Bonatsakis of Atlantia Software after submitting a new app called QuackPhone last week and getting this reply:

“Dear Atlantia Software LLC,

We’ve reviewed your application DuckPhone and we have determined that this application contains minimal user functionality and will not be appropriate for the App Store.

If you would like to share it with friends and family, we recommend you review the Ad Hoc method on the Distribution tab of the iPhone Developer Portal for details on distributing this application among a small group of people of your choosing or if you believe that you can add additional user functionality to DuckPhone we encourage you to do so and resubmit it for review.


iPhone App Review Team”

Now last time I checked this was America and if we in America want to spend our money on 99 cent apps that make duck noises, then by gar, that’s our gar-given right. Not so and our outrage should be boundless. As Nick writes:

This is a line I had hoped would not be crossed, but sadly it has been. I’m not sending this email because the world will be deprived if they can’t experience this application, but rather, in hopes that some or all of you will publish this story so that the public at large continues to hear about the ridiculous behavior of Apple in matters such as these. As time goes on, this platform is becoming more of a burden on developers, this will in turn lead to talented people moving on to more open platforms. In the end, the customer loses, and I sincerely hope Apple will realize this.

Amen, Nick. A line has been crossed. When a man can’t bring his duck app to to market because of a capricious decision by a fixie-riding Californian App Store Review Team Member in a tight t-shirt and jeans ensemble then a man needs to do something. God speed you, Nick, and your duck app. Don’t give up on this. You can be the Rosa Parks of duck apps.

Seriously, Apple, WTDuck? It’s a friggin duck phone. As I said before, this is an image thing, not a “porn” thing or “dumb app” thing. Apple wants a pristine App Store and will get it at any cost.