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App 'Easter Eggs' Blow Raspberry at iPhone Restrictions

Developers find way to circumvent content bans

App 'Easter Eggs' Blow Raspberry at iPhone Restrictions

CUPERTINO, Calif. – Clever application developers are finding a way around Apple's ban on certain content for iPhone devices, called "Easter Eggs,” but don't go searching for burrowed adult offerings in apps, at least not yet.

This hidden, "surprise" content could include porn, profanity (also banned by Apple) as well as malicious code that might damage a phone or worse, gather user info, reports Wired.

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One example is the app Lyrics, which seems straight-ahead: It displayed lyrics for songs in your music library. But of course, some songs contain those pesky swear words. As a result, Apple at first rejected the submission from developer Jelle Prins. In response, Prins installed a filter and the app was approved. But he also planted an Easter Egg -- a hidden feature -- for users to "unlock" the naughty words in songs. It's pretty easy to do as Wired notes: just go to the "About" page, swipe down three times and turn off the filter in options.

"It’s almost impossible for Apple to see if there’s an Easter Egg because they can’t really see the source code,” Prins said, adding that a developer could place an Easter Egg in an app, which might feature all sorts of content.

The Apple App Store has clearly stated no porn or malicious apps to invade privacy, but because the approval hurdles are often inconsistent, it appears things can indeed be snuck through. 

But so far, there are no reports of even "racy" approved apps, such as semi-stripping games such as Peekababe, featuring actual porn Easter Eggs of any kind.  Also, any adult companies or stars that have attempted to breach those Apple iPhone walls have done it with relatively tame content.

Last year, Tera Patrick's Teravision signed an agreement with content firm Giant Mobile, resulting in two variations of an iPhone App called SlideHer: SlideHer Tera Patrick and SlideHer Nautica Thorn. The company also offers iSexy, featuring various Maxim-style and softcore models models in lingerie and tiny bathing suits.

But it's a PG-Patrick at most in the tile-sliding puzzle app SlideHer, Patrick and Thorn wearing lingerie and such, but never nude.

As the blog iPhoneUnlocking comments, a proliferation of future Easter Eggs in apps could certainly strike a blow against Apple's app store.






Related Content:

Apple
Teravision, Inc.
Tera Patrick
Edward Duncan

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