When we first learned about the restrictions for submitting apps to the Windows Phone Marketplace there were immediate comparisons to Apples App Store and it generally seemed like they would end up in line with each other. As you probably know though, Microsoft recently pulled Imagewind from the Marketplace because it shows unfiltered images and thus lots of dirty stuff. But at the same time, you can get PingWire for the iPhone from the App Store. On their site they note “It’s a real-time image search. Be careful though, it’s totally unfiltered!” And it is. In fact I snapped that image from their website and it required some filtering just to use here.
To be clear, the iPhone has a large popup that you need to click through to allow unfiltered content. The Imagewind app included it’s own version that was similar in nature but Microsoft is not having it. It does violate the content policies by its terms and until there’s a method to filter content, it’s banned. Microsoft has stated “In order to be permissible, there would need to be a content filter before surfacing images since users are not querying a specific type of image and are rather pushed to them.” Imagewind does not have a filter so the mobile app cannot either. So you can have porn on Windows Pones if you look for it on the web, for example, but if the content automatically comes to you then it’s banned.
For sideloading the XAP is still available but it’ll be interesting to see how this shakes out, not just for this app but for future apps. And it’s definitely noteworthy that the app was approved twice before being rejected on an update.
I originally thought that the two markets would be essentially the same and as we see, that’s not the case. Anyway, the comments are just waiting for your input so share your thoughts.