Apple says it rejected almost 1 million new apps in 2020 and explains common reasons why

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  • Apple said it rejected almost 1 million apps that were submitted to its App Store for the first time in 2020.
  • It is the latest sign that Apple is becoming more transparent about how it approves and rejects iPhone apps.
  • The disclosure comes as Epic Games’ antitrust trial against Apple has focused on App Store’s failures.



Apple CEO Tim Cook speaks at Apple's Worldwide Developer Conference (WWDC) at the San Jose Convention Center in San Jose, California on Monday, June 4, 2018.


© Provided by CNBC
Apple CEO Tim Cook speaks at Apple’s Worldwide Developer Conference (WWDC) at the San Jose Convention Center in San Jose, California on Monday, June 4, 2018.

Apple said Tuesday it rejected almost 1 million apps that were submitted to its App Store for the first time in 2020.

The announcement is the latest sign that Apple is becoming more transparent about how it approves and rejects iPhone apps in response to scrutiny including a lawsuit from Epic Games and regulatory attention from lawmakers.

Apple argues that by having a system where the company approves each of the 1.8 million apps on the store and their updates, checking the apps against a lengthy list of App Store rules, it can keep iPhone users safe from scams, malware, and poor-quality user experiences.

Apple offered a number of statistics about its app rejection process in 2020.

  • It rejected almost 1 million apps that were submitted for the first time
  • It rejected almost 1 million app updates.
  • 48,000 apps were removed for using “hidden or undocumented features,” often software tools that Apple uses internally for its own apps.
  • 150,000 apps were removed because they were spam or copied another app.
  • 215,000 apps were removed because they collected too much user data or other privacy violations.
  • 95,000 apps were removed for fraud, often because they changed after Apple’s review to become a different kind of app, including gambling apps or pornography.
  • Apple booted 470,000 accounts from its developer program because of fraud.

In addition, Apple said that last month, it rejected 3.2 million installations of apps that use an enterprise certificate, which is a way to evade the App Store with a tool that big companies use to install internal-use apps on company iPhones.

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The disclosure comes as Epic Games’ antitrust case against Apple has focused on App Store’s failures. The…

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