The Windows Phone Store needs all the good apps it can get, so the recent rash of apps being unpublished has been very worrying.
One would think that would make Microsoft more careful about unpublishing apps themselves, but it seems that is not the case, with the latest to suffer a seemingly arbitrary and capricious removal being Hobbyist Software’s VLC Remote app.
The app, which has been in the Windows Phone Store since 2012 and which has a 5 star rating lets users remote control their desktop VLC app. The developer has so far only made $2000 from the app, but has still diligently updated the app to support WP8.1.
It seems the reward for his hard work was having his app pulled by Microsoft, who has not been open to explaining why, merely saying the app:
…does not accurately reflect the source, functionality, capabilities or features of the app
Presumably its Microsoft’s trademark police at work, though how one would name an app that is a remote for VLC other than VLC Remote is not clear.
Microsoft has also not given Hobbyist Software the opportunity to fix the issue with the result that they may leave the Windows Phone platform for good.
We certainly do not think this is how Microsoft should be treating good developers delivering the niche software that makes an app store robust and which windows phone desperately needs.
Read more about VLC Remote’s issues at HobbyistSoftware.com here.