Apple facing criticism for removing parental control apps from its store

Faisal Saeed Written by Faisal Saeed ·  1 min read >

Apple has removed several apps from its store that were created to help parents control what their kids do on their mobile devices. The Cupertino giant is using this reason to remove these apps from its stores that the applications are duplicating functionality which is already provided by the OS. But it seems like maybe the company is trying to remove competition in favor of its own features.

The applications that were removed also helped to monitor communications and screen time, which are almost similar to the features Apple released with iOS 12 last year. A report by the New York Times claims that Apple has removed 11 of the 17 most downloaded screen-time and parental control apps from its store and is forcing companies to remove features that allowed parents to control their children’s mobile devices.

Apple on these allegations posted a statement on its newsroom and said that the applications removed were using the features of iOS which were not designed to be used by consumer applications. The companies who created those apps were using Mobile Device Management (MDM) features, to control the data of consumers. The tech giant said, “MDM gives a third party control and access over a device and its most sensitive information including user location, app use, email accounts, camera permissions, and browsing history”.

Apple further explained, “As these features were being utilized by a third-party, those companies could have been collecting unauthorized data from the users which is against Apple’s terms of service. Additionally, the users of these apps may not have known they were opening themselves up to potential privacy issues by using these applications”.

Apple also stated that the developers of these apps were given 30 days to fix the guideline violations. Those who failed to fix the issue were removed from the App Store.

The New York Times report also stated that two makers of the apps that were removed from the App store filed a complaint against the Cupertino company on Thursday with one claiming that Apple forced it to alter his app to which made it less effective than Apple’s parental controls.