Apple Disallows Previously Approved Calculator Widgets for iOS 8 Notification Center

Apple is forcing popular iOS calculator app PCalc to remove its Notification Center widget, which allows users to access calculator functions directly from the "Today" view of the Notification Center. According to Apple, widgets on iOS are not allowed to perform any calculations.

Apple's sudden decision to disallow PCalc's previously approved widget is somewhat surprising as the app is featured in multiple places in the App Store, including a section called "Extend Your Apps" featuring apps with unique widgets, and "Great Apps and Games for iOS 8," which also features a selection of Notification Center widgets.

PCalc was one of the first apps to be updated for iOS 8 and along with being featured on MacRumors in a list of apps with Notification Center integration, it was lauded for its convenient and unique use of the Notification Center in App Store reviews and in iOS 8 coverage from a variety of sites.

pcalc
Apple appears to have some fairly strict guidelines governing the proper usage of Notification Center widgets. PCalc is not the first app that's facing the removal of its widget, as Apple previously pulled Launcher from the App Store. Launcher installed a Notification Center widget that provided access to quick actions like making a phone call, opening a pre-defined Maps route, or sending a tweet.

Apple's App Extension guidelines do clearly state that Notification Center widgets should have a "simple, streamlined UI," a limited number of interactive items, and specifies that a widget is "not a mini version" of an app, but it does not appear to expressly disallow calculations. There's also a Pcalc app for OS X Yosemite that brings similar functionality to the desktop Notification Center and it is unclear whether Apple will also require the removal of that widget.

For the time being, PCalc can be downloaded from the App Store for $9.99, with access to the Notification Center widget included. [Direct Link]

Top Rated Comments

thedeejay Avatar
95 months ago
So much for "moving forward" Apple.
Score: 54 Votes (Like | Disagree)
Cougarcat Avatar
95 months ago
Ridiculous. Reminds me of the early days of the App Store when they rejected apps from "duplicating existing functionality."

I don't understand why Apple does this. It just makes users mad and their features less useful.
Score: 33 Votes (Like | Disagree)
Simplicated Avatar
95 months ago
Is Apple even thinking from the user's perspective? It's really convenient to perform quick calculations without leaving the app, then double clicking to go back to where you were.

Sometimes Apple just makes asinine decisions. This is one of them.
Score: 32 Votes (Like | Disagree)
Jessica Lares Avatar
95 months ago
Sigh...

How about THEIR calculator widget in Yosemite then? Hmm?
Score: 24 Votes (Like | Disagree)
Rafterman Avatar
95 months ago
"Apple's App Extension guidelines do clearly state that Notification Center widgets should have a "simple, streamlined UI," a limited number of interactive items, and specifies that a widget is "not a mini version" of an app"

In other words, they want the Notification Center to be useless - to look pretty but do nothing helpful.
Score: 20 Votes (Like | Disagree)
nickhutson Avatar
95 months ago
£10 for a calculator? No thanks. I'll just swipe up.

I am still waiting for them to add the compose Tweet, Facebook etc buttons BACK to the notification centre.
Score: 20 Votes (Like | Disagree)

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