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Apple revises App Store guidelines on children and gambling apps

Nicole Lee, @nicole
August 15, 2013
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Developer guidelines for getting into Apple's good graces have never been static, but today's update to the App Review Guidelines revealed a few more notable changes than usual. Specifically, the folks in Cupertino have unveiled new rules regarding gambling and children's apps. With the former, all gambling apps that offer real money need to be free, have proper licensing and permissions, be restricted in areas that disallow it and can't offer credit through in-app purchases.

As for the latter, children's apps must now reflect an additional restriction in the federal Children's Online Privacy Protection Act (COPPA) that prevents developers from collecting media-related data like photos and videos from minors. Further, all apps for kids now require a privacy policy, behavioral advertising restrictions and a prompt for parental permission prior to any in-app purchase. As iTunes has recently allowed kids under 13 to have their own accounts, certain apps may also ask for a child's birth date, but only in accordance with current privacy statutes. iOS devs interested in making the App Store cut should certainly take heed of the new guidelines and get to coding -- at least while they still can.

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