Apple removed all vaping-related applications from the App Store, citing warnings from health experts that the proliferation of vaping products and e-cigarettes was a "public health crisis and a youth epidemic."
"[We’ve] we updated our App Store Review Guidelines to reflect that applications that promote or facilitate the use of these products are not permitted, "an Apple press release said. "As of today, these apps are no longer available for download."
The iPhone maker stopped accepting new vaping apps in June and has never allowed a sale of electronic cigarettes or vaping cartridges on their platform. A total of 1
Apple's action comes at a time when worries about vaping products are mounting in response to a mysterious vaping-related lung injury that killed at least 42 people. The exact causes of the injury are unknown, but the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) said last week that it could include a chemical thickener added to the vaping products.
Prior to this wave of lung injuries, there were other concerns about electronic cigarettes and vaping products. These include the risk of batteries and seizures exploding and high levels of vaping among teens. In December last year, the surgeon general in the United States announced that vaping youth was a "public health epidemic".
Apple says its decision to remove App Store products from the App Store was directly prompted by warnings like this. You can read the full company statement via Axios below:
We take great care to treat the App Store as a reliable place for customers, especially young people, to download applications. We constantly evaluate applications and consult the latest evidence to determine the risks to the health and well-being of consumers.
Recently, experts ranging from the CDC to the American Heart Association have attributed various pulmonary injuries and fatalities to electronic cigarettes and vaping products, going as far as to call the spread of these devices a public health crisis and a youth epidemic.
We agree and have updated our App Store Review Guidelines to reflect that applications promote or facilitate the use of these products is not permitted. As of today, these apps are no longer available for download.