Apple rejects 3D-Touch weight-measuring app for misleading title, despite its accuracy


Apple has a tendency to reject a lot of apps that try to use new features on the iPhone in unexpected ways. The latest example of this tendency reared its ugly head this week, with the rejection of Gravity.

Built by three friends, Chase McBride, Brice Tuttle, and Ryan McLeod, Gravity offers a convenient way to measure weight on the iPhone. It uses Apple’s new 3D Touch functionality, using a metal spoon as the conductive unit between the iPhone and whatever is inside the spoon.

Gravity appears to be very accurate for an app under a month old, measuring a 100g weight at 98.2g on the scale. That didn’t stop Apple from rejecting the app earlier this month however, stating that the title is misleading.

It didn’t offer any more information, leaving the three developers confused as to the actual reason for the rejection. McLeod created a video (seen above) for the reviewer describing the app’s functionality, in order to appeal the decision. But a few days later McLeod received another rejection.

Apple’s final message to the group said a scale app isn’t appropriate for the App Store. McLeod wrote a Medium article questioning the decision, bringing up some potential reasons for the ban, like drug use and screen damage, and counterarguing against all of these theoretical reasons.

Scale apps have managed to get onto the iOS App Store in the past, but most are in the entertainment section. Others use unconventional methods for measuring weight that are not anywhere near as accurate as Gravity — making it even more puzzling why Apple would block the app.

McLeod ended his post by saying that he hopes to see Apple open up the App Store to more inventive apps using 3D Touch in the future. He is also working on Blackbox, an “oppressive iOS puzzle” app, which he will return to until Apple (hopefully) changes its mind on scale apps.