If you’re looking to put your free product in the iOS App Store, you’re going to have to settle for the simple “Get” button Apple uses to denote a free app.
For the past month the company has been rejecting all apps that advertise their price — or lack thereof — in their titles, VentureBeat reports. Apps with names like “Extreme Sail Simulator FREE” or “FREE Daily Meditation” are often called that so when users search for “free” apps, they appear higher up in the results.
But now the apps will have to rely on the pull of the products’ names rather than their prices.
While Apple has previously warned off developers who did so in its developer guide, this is the first move its made to shut it down completely.
And it’s not just the title that’s being monitored — VentureBeat reports that prices in icons and previews are also a no-go.
“Your app’s name, icons, screenshots, or previews to be displayed on the App Store include references to your app’s price, which is not considered a part of these metadata items,” reads Apple’s response to developers who try their luck. “Please remove any references to your app’s price from your app’s name, including any references to your app being free or discounted.”
The company goes on to affirm that the price may only be mentioned in the description.
This change has not yet affected apps who already have “free” in the title, and it is unclear how long they will be able to stay that way.
Apple has confirmed the change in policy, but has not let on as to why it’s in place. The company could be tidying up its store by removing spam-like apps, or it could just be making the store less confusing for those who don’t use US dollars.
Considering Apple’s dedication to the aesthetic, it’s probably the former.
Featured image: PhotoAtelier via Flickr (CC 2.0, resized)