My two cents: Even though Apple has not seen a cent from its classic, yet long-discontinued iPods with the click wheels, it has decided to throw its weight and its unused trademark around to ruin everyone’s fun. I’m not for any type of IP infringement, but in this case, come on Apple. This is why we can’t have nice things.
Last week saw the US launch of a music player that could be skinned to make your iPhone look like the old iPod Classic with the click wheel. This week Apple has pulled it from the App Store.
The music player is called Rewound. It had been out in China and Russia for a while before making its way west, where it shot up to number 19 on the charts for US music apps. While it does not come installed with the iPod skin, the user-created interface could be downloaded, giving the player that nostalgic look and feel of the long-defunct Apple device.
On Tuesday, app designer Louis Anslow announced that Apple has removed Rewound from the store. He said that the tech giant claims it pulled the music player because it infringes on its iPod design, charged for Apple Music features, and people might mistake it for an Apple product.
Anslow contends that the app itself looks nothing like an iPod (above). The user-created skins have been around since before the app was available in the US. Apple didn’t seem to have an issue with them until the click-wheel interface started going viral.
At this point, the fate of the iOS music player is unclear. Anslow said that if the team tries to update Rewound to get it re-approved, it will “break” the app for the more than 170,000 existing users. Building a second, separate version is another option, but he feels that it would “barely be worth the time or effort,” since there is no guarantee Apple would allow it.
That said, Anslow has not given up. His plans are to create a platform-agnostic Rewound Web App that will function on any smartphone through the browser. He is also planning on developing a native Rewound app for Android devices.
Of course, with income cut off from the App Store removal, money is an issue. To fund the project, Anslow started a GoFundMe campaign to help get the development of the alternatives underway. He had no word on how long before his team could have something viable ready. In fact, he said he could not make any promises at all.
“Development work is unpredictable so we are not promising fully finished versions of each of these apps,” Anslow warns in the GoFundMe description.