An article entitled "Why Apple is Afraid of Bitcoin" discusses Apple's interest in online payments. It also talks about the removal of 2 Bitcoin apps, Blockchain Wallet and BitPak, from the appstore.

The explanation given by Apple was that “apps must comply with all legal requirements in any location where they are made available to users.” Apple further stated, “it is the developer’s obligation to understand and conform to all local laws” and the developer was referred to the legal department for an exact explanation of which law it violates. Clearly, they will not be able to cite a law as no laws prohibiting bitcoin currently exist in any jurisdiction.

Though the author of the article claims that no laws prohibit Bitcoin, Apple obviously disagrees but was very unhelpful in explaining which law it might be referring to. Has Apple discussed its stance regarding legality of apps using Bitcoin or other alternative payment systems?

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    Linkbait title. I don't think Bitcoin is on Apple's radar, and they are certainly not "afraid" (and the other assertion that Bitcoin support would drive iPhone sales is equally bogus). Either way, Apple will not allow alternative payment systems of any kind, legal or not, for their own (business) reasons.
    – Thilo
    Jun 18, 2012 at 1:48
  • @Thilo, I agree about the title. However, there must be a cut-off point somewhere relating to the degree-of-alternativeness of each particular app. If they allow say, Paypal, but disallow say, Dwolla, then I'd like to know the reasoning. Jun 18, 2012 at 2:06
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    They don't really allow even PayPal. There is a PayPal app to manage your own account (and major banks have similar apps), but the much more interesting PayPal API, which other apps could use to handle donations or in-app-purchases are still forbidden. Why don't they kick out PayPal and those banks altogether? Because they are big. If they weren't Apple would probably throw them out. (Maybe they still will if Apple really gets into payments in a big way). Don't think they care about providing "reasoning". You certainly don't have to be "illegal" to not get in the store.
    – Thilo
    Jun 18, 2012 at 2:33

1 Answer 1


As I read here Google does not allow 3th party merchanting services: https://stackoverflow.com/questions/10217727/apple-android-3rd-party-merchant-services

I'm quite sure that Apple wouldn't allow them either.

Although, by law, Bitcoin is not considered as a payment, since law does not recognize Bitcoin as a currency.

So by the rules i don't think they can ban you for using Bitcoin, but as we all know, Apple just decides itself what it allows and what not.

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