Apple’s App Store review process is getting new rules as the iPhone-maker is set to start requiring developers to explain why they use certain APIs in their products before submitting them to the app marketplace.
As part of the upcoming change, which the company first introduced at WWDC 2023, certain APIs have now been categorized as ‘’Required Reason APIs’’, and in order to use these APIs in their apps, developers will soon be required to specify their purpose first.
On the Apple Developer website, the tech giant explains that the reason behind the change is that some APIs ‘’have the potential of being misused to access device signals to try to identify the device or user, also known as fingerprinting’’. The company notes that fingerprinting is not allowed no matter if a user gives their permission for tracking or not.
‘’Your app or third-party SDK must declare one or more approved reasons that accurately reflect your use of each of these APIs and the data derived from their use,’’ Apple explains. ‘’You may use these APIs and the data derived from their use for the declared reasons only. These declared reasons must be consistent with your app’s functionality as presented to users, and you may not use the APIs or derived data for tracking.’’
Starting this fall, when Apple is expected to launch its latest operating systems including iOS 17 to the public, the company will send emails to developers informing them about submitting apps that use a Required Reason API without specifying the purpose of it. Apps that don’t explain their use of these APIs will be rejected by App Store Connect from Spring 2024.