Apple issued a public apology for approving developer Sikalosoft's controversial "Baby Shaker" application for the iPhone and iPod touch. About 24 hours after removing the application (which simulates the shaking of an infant) from the App Store, Apple released the following statement: "This application was deeply offensive and should not have been approved for distribution on the App Store. When we learned of this mistake, the app was removed immediately. We sincerely apologize for this mistake and thank our customers for bringing this to our attention."
Apple nevertheless refused to comment on the application approval process that led to "Baby Shaker" gaining entry to the App Store in the first place. Apple has previously stated it reviews every single iPhone application submitted for download via the virtual storefront, vowing to reject applications that violate guidelines for porn, spam or other offensive content. Consistency has not been Apple's strong suit, however--earlier this year, it turned down a South Park application developed for the iPhone under the supervision of the animated comedy's creators Trey Parker and Matt Stone, calling the app content "potentially offensive" even though the iTunes storefront continues to offer full-length episodes of the series for premium download. Apple also has rejected applications that appear to compete with its own business interests, while other apps have lingered in submission purgatory for weeks or even months at a stretch with no explanation.
As for Sikalosoft, the developer has finally broken its silence on the debacle, posting on its website a message reading "Okay, so maybe the Baby Shaker iPhone app was a bad idea."
For more on Apple's apology:
- read this CNET News article