Apple Allowing 3rd Party Browsers into App Store?

Apple I found this to be an interesting development! It seems that in the last day or so, Apple has begun allowing 3rd party browsing applications into the AppStore. Apparently, these type of applications were not approved in the past due to “duplicating functionality.” However, it seems that someone has changed their mind because applications dating back as far as October are now being approved and added to the App Store. Gizmodo explains a couple of the new applications;

“The chromeless Edge (free), vibration-countering Shaking Web ($1.99), privacy-inclined Incognito ($1.99) and enhanced-tab WebMate ($0.99) browsers all claim functionality that you can’t get with Mobile Safari, but they’re all based on Safari’s version of WebKit. In a sense, they’re like browser extensions, but which can only run one at a time and as completely separate apps.”

So, does this mean we will soon be seeing Firefox available in the App Store? Probably not, but it does seem like Apple has been relaxing some of it’s restrictions lately. These are not the only type of applications that have been added to the AppStore in recent days that, in the past, were not allowed. Honestly, the AppStore is so saturated already that I’m not sure relaxing restrictions is that big of a deal though, I’m wondering if it will affect Apple’s stature. Let me know what you think in the comments.

via Gizmodo and MacRumors.

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  1. firefox and Opera, I hope.

  2. Correction, apple allowing apps with embedded safari to be sold as browsers.

    Until you see a mozilla , opera or other engine bases browser not a lot has changed.

  3. I like Shakingweb, its a great idea, even if it is based on Webkit which is just Safari it’s a useful application and unique application/browser.

    I don’t know if this is a good or bad step for Apple. Are they going to just allow browsers based on Webkit. Or are they actually going to try and allow more applications that duplicate their own software into the AppStore for customer consumption.

    I don’t think Apple knew what was going to happen with the AppStore, they had an idea. But that has changed, and so their policies have as well. Lets hope more changes happen. I for one would like to see try before you buy, as it would be beneficial for developers and customers.

  4. I think another browser is close to pointless unless it does something more than Safari. And I can bet anything that any 3rd party browser would be as fast as Safari is anyway. Apple wouldn’t allow them if they were better than Safari.

  5. talking about browsers i officially now use camino on my mac =p and i<3 it!

    its super fast and looks great. i recommend u check it out.

  6. natetechrock says

    it would be funny if they let Internet explorer in the app store.

  7. These kinds of applications have been allowed since the beginning.
    UIWebKit has always been in the SDK.

    1Password is an alternate browser, it has been in the app store since July.
    Cooliris is also an alternate browser. It first appeared in October.

    The reasons for application approval delays are unknown, assuming it’s because of “duplicating functionality” is just speculation. Since an app with that duplicate functionality was added to the app store less than a month after its opening, and another just 4 months later, I would believe that assumption to be incorrect.

    I would also find it hard to believe that Apple didn’t know what the devs at Agile were doing. What they were planing was posted on their site long before their most anticipated app was released.

  8. I just released Lookmarks for Iphone. Approval time was 6 weeks!! We had to create a new code for a coverflow style interface to show visual bookmarks. Apple kept telling us we were using a private API but we weren’t. The confusion was finally resolved but it too ages!