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Thursday, March 04, 2010, 12:55 pm PT (03:55 pm ET)

Apple removes Wi-Fi scanners, 'minimum functionality' iPhone apps

Apple this week continued its crackdown against what it feels are substandard applications in its App Store for the iPhone and iPod touch, this time removing Wi-Fi scanners and software it said has "minimum user functionality."

According to the development studio Three Jacks Software, Apple removed its application, called "WiFi-Where," due to its alleged use of unpublished APIs within the iPhone OS software development kit. The developer noted that other applications, including WifiTrak, WiFiFoFum, yFy Network Finder, WiFi Get, eWifi, and WiFi Analyzer were also removed.

"I find it quite ironic that Apple removes these very handy, very useful apps from the app store when there are so many useless gimick apps that just pollute the App Store pages," the developer wrote.

Three Jacks Software said it will re-release its application for jailbroken iPhones via the Cydia installer. Jailbreaking is a practice that circumvents the iPhone OS and allows users to run unauthorized code on their iPhone or iPod touch.

In addition, earlier this week, CrunchGear reported on a developer that created an application that simply made the iPhone quack like a duck. The software was denied from the App Store by Apple due to the fact that it "contains minimal user functionality."

Apple of late has made an attempt to clean up the App Store, beginning last month with a change in policy on "overtly sexual content." More than 5,000 applications were removed and the widespread banishment even mistakenly removed at least one application that sold swimwear, though Apple later corrected the error.

Not long after the App Store opened in 2008, a number of crude burping and farting applications were released and found moderate success, but also resulted in criticism of the level of quality of the software available in the App Store.