The big news today is that Apple has relaxed some of the incredibly onerous restrictions they imposed on iOS applications back in April. Specifically, Apple has killed section 3.3.1, which prohibited applications built using any kind of translation or compatibility layer. They’ve also published the guidelines used in the review process, adding a layer of transparency that has been lacking thus far. I still think the review process should still be much more transparent than it is, but these are important steps forward. We can all thank Android for putting competitive pressure on Apple and outspoken developers for shaming the company for these changes.
Scott Rosenberg makes the point that while the app review process may make sense for judging applications, it’s scary as hell for people using the platform to distribute content. One thing that should be clarified is that Apple isn’t issuing new rules, it’s publishing the rules it has been applying internally. At least we have something tangible to critique, beyond just reading the tea leaves when specific applications are rejected.