App Store Guidelines on COVID-19-Related Apps

Apple Developer News:

The App Store should always be a safe and trusted place for users to download apps. Now more than ever that commitment takes on special significance as the world fights the COVID-19 pandemic. Communities around the world are depending on apps to be credible news sources — helping users understand the latest health innovations, find out where they can get help if needed or provide assistance to their neighbors.

To help fulfill these expectations, we’re evaluating apps critically to ensure data sources are reputable and that developers presenting these apps are from recognized entities such as government organizations, health-focused NGOs, companies deeply credentialed in health issues, and medical or educational institutions. Only developers from one of these recognized entities should submit an app related to COVID-19. Entertainment or game apps with COVID-19 as their theme will not be allowed.

Misinformation (well-intentioned or not), scams, just plain noise — we don’t need any of that in this crisis. The only downside to this policy I can think of is that potentially useful apps from non-credentialed developers aren’t going to get through. Good on Apple for making this policy explicit, so that such developers can focus their efforts on building web apps, or collaborating with an organization that has the necessary credentials.

Saturday, 14 March 2020