Apple has removed over 1,000 apps developed by Molinker after a flood of fake five-star reviews for their products were discovered in the AppStore. Incredibly, the fraudulently rated apps made up one percent of all available iPhone applications.
An individual going by the handle SCW on blog iPhoneography revealed the scam in a letter to Phil Schiller, Apple Senior Vice President of Worldwide Product Marketing. Not only were the reviews in question poorly written, an overwhelming majority of the reviewers only entered feedback on Molinker's software.
The company was also accused of having its own employees obtain and redeem promo codes to publish completely fake reviews on the AppStore.
Increasing the average rating of an application can lead more iPhone users to download the app and boost exposure and revenue for developers. In some cases, application reviews are driven downward due to technical problems or user confusion.Many of Molinker's apps involved travel, photography and public transport. The company is based in China. Appfreak received the following statement from the company:
We got email from Apple yesterday which told us our contract is changed to pending status.
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Actually, we do not know what's wrong so far. We had contacted Apple for such sudden changes, hope we can get quick response and actions from Apple.