Apple has clarified to developers new guidelines for submitting apps related to COVID-19, which aim to crack down on coronavirus-themed games or entertainment apps, while also expediting apps from governments and non-governmental organizations (NGOs).
The company explains, “we’re evaluating apps critically to ensure data sources are reputable and that developers presenting these apps are from recognized entities such as government organizations, health-focused NGOs, companies deeply credentialed in health issues, and medical or educational institutions.”
Apple further writes, “only developers from one of these recognized entities should submit an app related to COVID-19. Entertainment or game apps with COVID-19 as their theme will not be allowed.”
For developers submitting critical apps related to COVID-19, they should select “Time-Sensitive Event” on the expedite request form, says Apple, otherwise the regular App Store review process may take longer.
Apple says if you’re “developing an app on behalf of a client, please advise your client to add you to the development team of their Apple Developer account.”
In light of the coronavirus pandemic, Apple has closed all retail stores worldwide except for those in China, which have all reopened. The company also announced last week its annual developer conference in-person event has been cancelled, but will instead take place online only in June.