Apple rejected my app, so I decided to open-sourcing it

Emojilist project sample screens

Earlier this year, I had the project of creating one new app per month, try to monetize them or run them as a side-project/business. I started with the idea that to solve a problem that I had.

I wanted a straightforward way to create shopping lists using only emojis. Just that, only emojis are allowed. Check the repository out!

I had a fun time creating it, exploring new project architecture for iOS from scratch and trying out some good open-source libraries like Realm and Spring. I have even calculated the amount of time I spent creating it so I could calculate how much I had invested in work hours, so I could have a baseline of how much I needed to get in return by selling it:

. Sum R$/h R$
Mojilist 51 R$100,00 R$5,100

The rejection

Everything was fine, and I was excited to release, I generated the screenshots needed, and I have sent the binary to Apple for review. My surprise was that the app got rejected because it used Emojis:

Answer from Apple (1)
Answer from Apple (1)
Answer from Apple (1)
Answer from Apple (2)

First of all, I was surprised they were enforcing such policy, to me it makes no sense: they already charge a big chunk of any sale in the store (30%), the minimum I expected was to be free to use at least the emojis they have popularized throughout their platform.

Open-sourcing the project

But opinions aside, I would have to draw many icons to get the chance of resubmitting it, and I think my time would be better invested in other stuff (like learning Node.js and React.js). So I decided to open source this project to get community feedback and perhaps create something else from it. Maybe it could be a good starter for junior developers to try to understand how to build an app from scratch.

Unfortunately, I had to remove the iconography I used, as it is copyrighted. But other than that, the rest is distributed under Apache 2.0 license. Enjoy by checking out the repository at GitHub and let me know what you think!

Tags: ios, apple, app, open-source, swift, cocoapods