Shortly thereafter, Apple went on to reveal its own swipe keyboard in association with the new Apple Watch Series 7. Users everywhere realized that the “new” Apple keyboard simply copied the one the developer had put on the App Store, which was later removed.
It should come as no surprise that the developer filed a lawsuit against Apple. This specific developer is far from the first. Apple has a reputation for looking at the applications available on the app store. Then, they copy the ideas and integrate them into their operating systems. The tech giant does this because it allows them to get around the cost of paying the developers for their ideas. It has even earned its own name, called “Sherlocking.”
This lawsuit claims that Apple continually rejected and held up his keyboard for months all while trying to force him to sell the keyboard to them for a cheap price. The lawsuit also alleges that Apple singled out his keyboard specifically, all while letting others go through on the App Store. Even though the company says that it simply changed its mind regarding the keyboard, it will be interesting to see if this argument holds up in court. The plaintiff in a lawsuit alleges that it took more than a year of resubmissions and appeals in order for his keyboard to return to the store. When he saw that a replica of his keyboard was available with the new Apple Watch, he decided that enough was enough.
It will be interesting to see if this lawsuit sets a precedent regarding developers and Apple. Can large corporations copy the ideas of their developers? Do developers have the right to have their apps on the App Store without being harassed by Apple? Many are interested in what the courts decide.