Apple e-mails iPhone developer rejections, angering some

Apple today sent out a series of bulk acceptance or temporary rejection letters to registered iPhone developers who applied last week for the company’s paid iPhone Developer Programs. During the iPhone Software Roadmap Event held last week, Apple CEO Steve Jobs explained that the program would be available to a limited number of developers at first, a message that is repeated in the email.

U.S. applicants received an e-mail stating: “Dear Registered iPhone Developer, Thank you for expressing interest in the iPhone Developer Program.  We have received your enrollment request.  As this time, the iPhone Developer Program is available to a limited number of developers and we plan to expand during the beta period.  We will contact you again regarding your enrollment status at the appropriate time. Thank you for applying.”

Applicants outside the United States received an e-mail stating: “Dear Registered iPhone Developer, Thank you for expressing interest in the iPhone Developer Program. We have received your enrollment request.  At this time, the iPhone Developer Program is only available in the US and will expand to other countries during the beta period.  We will contact you again regarding your enrollment status at the appropriate time. Thank you for applying.”

Neither of these e-mails further explained Apple’s criteria for acceptance or rejection, spurring concern that large developers or other past Apple partners were accepted rather than a wider variety of applicants; in any case, it appears that the number of accepted developers is a small portion of those that applied. Some developers, as noted by TUAW, have expressed anger or disappointment at not making the first cut, and suggested that attempting to develop for the platform without Apple’s involvement at this stage is an “unacceptable risk,” given that approval is required to actually sell iPhone software. Did you apply and receive an email today? Let us know in the comments.

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