11 Replies
      Latest reply: Sep 22, 2015 6:45 AM by RaviM RSS
      RaviM Level 1 Level 1 (0 points)

        Hello All, I need to integrate one Open source framework (idoubs framework of Doubango) in to my application under GPL license.User's can download app from app store with free of cost. Does apple approve that app.?

        I read some articles as apple rejecting apps which are under GPL.

        Can you please help me on this.

        • Re: Does apple approve GPL based apps?
          RLKingSoftware Level 3 Level 3 (485 points)

          GPL requires you to grant all rights including source code, to everyone who recieves your

          app. Wether you charge a fee for your app or not, they are still entitled to the source code.

          This is why GPL is not suitable for the app store. You do not OWN anything produced under

          GPL and, because you claim to own your app when you submit it to the app store, Apple

          rightly rejects it.

            • Re: Does apple approve GPL based apps?
              RaviM Level 1 Level 1 (0 points)

              Thank you for sharing valuable information RLKingSoftware.

              Here is a google group link, in that they discussed about the same thing. Here are some points

              1) Nothing stops you from using a GPL version of doubango stack/iDoubs/IMSdroid in an application you create on top of it

              2) Nothing stops you from publishing it to Appstore (apple) or Playstore (google) - it will not be rejected just because you use GPL

              3)Apple will rejects the app when the  developer of any component of that product complains to the apple.

               

              https://groups.google.com/forum/#!msg/doubango/fBTMSrRDPag/KDMsm8CJm90J

              I created a layer on top of frmework. If I share the code does apple approve the app?.  I will be gratefull for your help.

              • Re: Does apple approve GPL based apps?
                chuckc192000 Level 3 Level 3 (145 points)

                This is not true.  I have two apps on the App Store that are GPL and I've seen others.

                  • Re: Does apple approve GPL based apps?
                    Smithers Level 1 Level 1 (5 points)

                    Just because you sneaked your GPL code into App Store undetected, does not mean you haven't broken the license agreement. That's like saying "This isn't true. I have stolen comic books without the police catching me, and have seen others do it too".

                     

                    It's not about Apple not approving GPL based apps - it's about your conscience allowing you to do it.

                  • Re: Does apple approve GPL based apps?
                    junkpile Level 6 Level 6 (2,220 points)

                    I'm not sure they *reject* apps with GPL code; they have no way of knowing what the license was on the source code you used, do they? But if someone complained, and it was found that you hadn't complied with the licensing requirements of GPL by making your app source code public, Apple could kick you off the store I'm guessing. Personally I wouldn't risk it.

                  • Re: Does apple approve GPL based apps?
                    hotpaw2 Level 2 Level 2 (80 points)

                    Note that whether or not Apple approves apps that contain certain licenses, and whether or not your distribution of those apps violates the legal rights of other copyright holders in certain jurisdictions, are separate questions, the latter one for you to ask your lawyer or IP attorney. 

                     

                    In any case, in reference another reply, the GPL does not seem to remove your copyright "ownership" on the code you wrote, nor prohibit you from selling or dual licensing the portions of the code you independently authored.

                      • Re: Does apple approve GPL based apps?
                        NotMyName Level 4 Level 4 (815 points)

                        On the other hand, submitting an application to Apple for review that the developer in question doesn't have the proper right to is a violation of the Developer Agreement.  That's the case whether the application is rejected upon submission, or whether the violation comes to Apple's attention at a later date.

                         

                        If your legal advice says one thing, and Apple says another, Apple's discretion allows it to remove the applications even if your lawyer has a nice sounding argument.

                      • Re: Does apple approve GPL based apps?
                        Brian A. Level 1 Level 1 (0 points)

                        Lots of confusion here, but the answer is largely "no" for GPL. RLKing Software's answer above is mostly correct, with a tweak.

                        The problem isn't the GPL clause that requires you to redistribute the source code; you can certainly meet that obligation.

                        The problem is Section 10 of the GPL license itself, which states that you may not impose additional restrictions when you resdistribute the GPL code of others. Putting an app in the App Store requires you to comply with Apple's additional restrictions, and that is not allowed by the GPL.

                         

                        All open source licenses are not the same. Companies often choose GPL over BSD or other more liberal licenses because they want to restrict you from using their software in commercial products. They often dual-license, allowing you to purchase the same code under a license which is compatible with systems like the App Store.

                         

                        RaviM, you should contact the company to find out if there are other license options other than GPL. Otherwise, you are asking for trouble, either from the company or Apple itself if you bundle it in your product.