It’s inevitable that when something becomes popular, the copycats come out of the woodwork to piggyback on its success. Such is the case developing in the Apple App Store, where popular iPhone apps are being copied over and over by developers trying to cash in on the popularity of others.
The problem has existed since the beginning of the App Store, but it seems to be getting ever more prevalent as of late. Lead developer for Tumblr, Macro Arment, wrote a blog post detailing his own experience with dealing with copycats in trying to download “Angry Bird,” a simple iPhone game that’s gaining popularity and subsequent copycats.
In searching for “Angry Bird,” for example, the first two results are legitimate, while the other six of the remaining top ten results are pure spam. As Arment notes, each of the “spam” apps have plenty of downloads and customer reviews, even though most reviews slam the app developer for being scams and ripoffs. Still, the developer is still cashing in on the downloads, obviously not thinking twice about a bad review.
Arment also notes the growing trend of “squatters,” or developers who create “guides,” or “cheats” for popular iPhone games and apps, most being completely worthless. InTekOne, LLC is one such squatter, with 58 apps in the App Store that are so-called guides for popular iPhone games. All of which violate name and icon trademarks while ripping off thousands of consumers.