It seems Apple has ordered yet another developer to make changes to his app’s Notification Center widget even after it was approved for sale and adopted by countless users. Previously the company’s indecisiveness on the purpose of widgets led to an app called Launcher being pulled from sale, and a similar fate was almost met by the popular pCalc widget until Apple changed its mind (again).
The widget in question today was created by developer Greg Pierce and is part of the popular note-taking app Drafts. The app allowed users to create new entries in the app by pressing a button in the widget, which then opened the app’s composer (in the app, of course).
According to a series of tweets from Pierce, Apple has decided that widgets are solely for “information presentation” and should not contain buttons—a fact contradicted by the example eBay widgets demonstrated by Apple’s own Craig Federighi at WWDC this year.
Pierce says he’s already been through the appeals process and will be resubmitting a version of Drafts without the widget to comply with Apple’s new restriction. If this new rule catches on, we may see similar rejections for other popular apps, like Evernote and Fantastical, in the near future.
Unless Apple changes its mind again. Again.
Shame. Actionable widgets on the Today screen were a fantastic idea and hopefully a compromise can be met between Apple and developers going forward.