Apple recently made a decision to start culling their applications store and have removed over five thousand applications already for not being consistent with the new rules. According to chillifresh.com the new rules for iPhone apps strictly forbid any sexual content whatsoever regardless of whether it is an image, a silhouette, innuendos, content, etc. This news might well negate any positive reaction from a report by Gartner that shows that Apple iPhone sales have effectively doubled over last year.
According to the report published by Gartner (which can be seen here) Apple effectively more than doubled sales for the Apple iPhone smart phone with less than 12 million units shipped in 2008 and more than 24 million shipped in 2009. Microsoft Windows Mobile, Linux and Symbian OS based devices all respectively lost market share although more Symbian OS based devices were shipped in 2009 than in 2008.
The popularity of the Apple iPhone OS based devices that is the Apple iPhone line seems set to fall however as more than 5000 applications were removed from the Apple Apps store due to infringement of newly devised rules which prohibit an application from exhibiting any sexual content.
While concerned parents may at first rejoice, many analysts and reporters have rightly pointed out that neither Apple Safari (the web browser available on the Apple iPhone OS) or any other browser to be used on the Apple iPhone is regulated or monitored or censored in any way and there are still many applications that do exhibit content that is sexual in nature (case in point the Sports Illustrated App or Playboy App).
While this move has justly outraged developers (currently working on apps for the Apple iPhone) who feel that they should have at least been given notice and allowed to make changes to their applications that would allow continuous sales to be generated, others still have lauded this move despite conceding that the execution could have been better.
Apple iPhones are currently one of the most popular hand held devices and its operating system (Apple iPhone OS) is widely believed to be one of the best available in the market today. This latest move by Apple however might well cause developers as well as consumers to shift to other mobile operating platforms and consequently other cellphone manufacturers.
This combined with a report suggesting that Google Android currently has the highest number of free applications in the applications store (over 50%) might well be an indication of which way the market is headed. Another possibility of course is the newly released Samsung Bada which offers many of the popular features available in the Apple iPhone and also the Google Android operating systems.