Popular Phoneys sticker app for iMessage in limbo after warning from Apple

The Phoneys sticker app for iMessage has landed its creator in a serious conundrum after Apple called him with demands that he change it or face its removal from the iMessage app store. In a post on Medium, Adam Howell explains he built the sticker pack—which allows users to paste a convincing-looking iMessage bubble over a friend’s message to make it look like they said something they didn’t—with every expectation that it wouldn’t make it through the approval process. Once it did, people took notice, and with a little publicity, it shot to the top of the Top Paid list on the iMessage store.
That’s when Howell got a call from Apple informing him that they weren’t happy Phoneys had made it through their new streamlined approval process. The representative demanded changes to the stickers — that they be made colors other than blue or green, such as the bubbles displayed in iMessage, and that they use a font other than San Francisco to ensure no one mistakes the stickers for actual Messages. Howell has been given a week to make the alterations, but is publicly debating whether the app can even survive after the changes, since they would completely undermine the intended purpose of the stickers.


Dan Pye was a news editor at iLounge. He's been involved with technology his whole life, and started writing about it in 2009. He's written about everything from iPhone and iPad cases to Apple TV accessories.