Most Controversial iPhone apps



Seattle’s finest gothic punksters Aiden had their Knives app where content ranged from the profane to the religiously offensive, rejected by the Apple iTunes Store regulators. This sparked lead singer William Francis into an open letter tirade to Apple where all manner of expletives were voiced including, “To celebrate this great occasion, I’m going to visit your iTunes Music Store and download The Slim Shady LP; I really want to hear that song he sings about killing his wife and dumping her body in the ocean. Awesome!!!”.

 Nine Inch Nails AccessNewspaper(s) app

Any chance of a builder’s favourite inside page being available on your iPhone was swiftly denied when a newspaper browsing app was rejected after The Sun’s titillating content was deemed wholly inappropriate.

The 59p Newspaper(s) app removed the Sun from its 50 best national and international papers because of the topless shots of buxom blondes and brunettes. Developer Makayama Media hopes that the release of the firmware version 3.0 with expanded parental control should enable the Sun and its top heavy lovelies to once again rear its busty self.


Riling up rock band Nine Inch Nails, Apple rejected their NIN Access owing to the fact that there was a song accessible through a link in the app which featured language that contained ‘objectionable content’.


This led front man Trent Reznor to react with more than an ounce of outrage at Apple’s decision to pull the app from the iTunes store, questioning their sense over the decision. An unchanged version was eventually submitted and finally approved following a vicious Twitter campaign to overturn the decision.



Baby Shaker

“On a plane, on the bus, in a theatre. Babies are everywhere you don’t want them to be!” Quite how the Baby Shaker app got past the Apple regulators and on to the App Store is anyone’s guess but after first appearing back in April, it lasted just three days after a number of blogs and review sites understandably drew attention to its rather distasteful nature.

Fake Watch and Fake Watch Gold Edition

Apple experienced the legal wrath from luxury watch-makers and jewellers Cartier after they accused Apple of infringing on their trademark Tank watch brand. The apps in question, Fake Watch and Fake Watch Gold Edition apparently showed the current time on virtual watches that struck more than a startling resemblance to their iconic designs. Their time on the App store was short-lived as the lawsuit was quickly resolved with the apps in question removed from the iTunes Store.

iPhone Gun

French developers Damabia launched their Bang!Bang! application which turns the touchscreen handset into a ‘mock gun,’ rightly upset more than an a handful of iPhone users. Available for just 59p on the iTunes download store, the app offers a wide choice of revolvers and shotguns to play adult cops and robbers. Anti-gun campaigners however failed to see the lighter side of this particular double barrel mobi-action.



Access to thousands of free books from the Project Gutenberg library sounds relatively harmless, but the fact that James Montgomerie’s ebook reader program gave access to the Karma Sutra was enough for Apple to act. Montgomerie was quick to criticise the decision via his blog saying, “Eucalyptus itself doesn’t ‘contain’ books any more than a newly bought iPod ‘contains’ songs.” After much discussion, Apple did finally allow the app to go live.

Me So Holy


Suitably infringing on delicate religious grounds, the premise behind Me so Holy, enabled you to substitute a photo for the face of Jesus. The app unsurprisingly was blocked under the Section 3.3.12 of the iPhone developer agreement, which deems it falling under, “Obscene, pornographic, offensive or defamatory content or materials of any kind (text, graphics, images, photographs, etc.), or other content or materials that in Apple’s reasonable judgement may be found objectionable by iPhone or iPod touch users.” So basically no Jesus mocking allowed then.

iSnort Mimics

This cocaine-sniffing sim has been nowhere near the family-friendly App Store but has been roaming around unofficially for iPhone users to sample in its powdery delights. Setting you back a whole five English pounds, as the website sums it up, “Be the envy of the in-crowd. Get ejected from nightclubs Shock and amaze your so-called friends. Get oral sex from Z-list celebrities.” Nice.

 Teen Torture


A marketing strategy that went more than a little pear-shaped, this distastefully sounding app was no way representative of the content, but for not realising the inappropriateness of the name it was deservedly withdrawn.


The concept was actually to bring attention to controversial misuse of high frequency generators being played at high volume. The device is currently used to prevent such ASBO warranting behaviour as loitering, vandalism and general loutish behaviour.


Developers Inner Four took it upon themselves to remove the app which was replaced with the more suited title, “Teen hearing test”.



A man never far from a bout of controversy, it was perhaps no surprise that the rapper Eminem’s ‘Relapse’ iPhone app game to tie in with the release of his new album was held back from its original release.


Rumoured to feature a tattooed up Eminem as an escaped patient, the game is said to take inspiration from his 3 A.M video which features a maniacal Eminem on the loose. The game is still scheduled for release but we imagine not before more than a few amendments.

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