Apple Bans 1,000+ Apps After Developer Is Caught Faking Reviews

Apple just swung the banhammer pretty hard at Molinker, a development company, after a customer named Patrick Timney pointed out that the majority of reviews on Molinker apps were fake. Until yesterday, the company had 1,011 apps on the App Store, mostly easy-to-knock-out travel guides for 99 cents each. Now they’re all gone, and Apple’s VP Phil Schiller told iPhoneography, “Yes, this developer’s apps have been removed from the App Store and their ratings no longer appear either.”

See? Sometimes it does matter whether you complain or not. In this case, had Timney not taken the time to contact the blog iPhoneography and then Apple to report the fake ratings, someone out there might be buying a Molinker app right now. Timney told iPhone Savior,

Two of Molinker’s photography apps had already made it into the Top 20 Paid Apps, with Color Magic being featured in Apple’s Staff Favorites section on the front page of the App Store.

“I compiled every investigative thing I could find to prove my point, including screen shot after screen shot proving that the reviews were bogus,” Timney said. “I personally emailed Phil Schiller. On Saturday afternoon he sent me an email from his home, telling me they just removed all the Molinker apps from the App Store along with the ratings.”

“I figured Apple would investigate my claims, but not yank every app Molinker had in the App Store, Patrick said. “I was speechless, I didn’t think that was gonna happen.”

“Apple Bans Another Developer, 1000+ Apps Pulled” [MobileCrunch via IntoMobile]
“iPhone Developer Caught in Alleged App Store Ratings Scam” [iPhone Savior]