After it’s recent feud with China, Apple is onto Iran now. Apple recently removed VPNs from the App Store in China and now it have been removing Apps made by Iranian developers, from the App store. The reason? They were blocked due to the US sanctions in Iran. Apple, in a message to the developers affected by such act, precisely informed them the reason, as to why they have to do so. The message in the online petition, to bar the decision went like, ‘Under the US sanctions regulations, the App Store cannot host, distribute, or do business with apps or developers connected to certain US embargoed countries’.
Some of the Apps which were removed, includes AloPeyk, a delivery service App, Delion, a food delivery startup, Snapp, etc. Some of the representatives of Apple confirmed the news, however, they were unable to comment further. The petition which was laid out to reverse the action, was signed by more than 23,000 people. People have also ranted about the same on twitter, revealing their frustration out.
Even though there is a ban on the sale of iPhones in Iran, many iPhones are smuggled into the country. According to the numbers, around 48 million iPhones have been sold in the country of around 80 million people. So much for a ban. There are many developers in Iran, who develop Apps for the App Store, so the ban does not affect the business. However the recent turn of events, proved them wrong. Along with the sale of iPhones, there are several other blocked sites in Iran, including Facebook, Twitter and Youtube.
Google on the other hand haven’t imposed any ban on such Apps. Its Play Store in Iran supports free Apps but not the paid ones. This action of Apple have had a huge effect on the current startup ecosystem, and until a decision have been taken otherwise, it will continue to affect it.