One of the bigger beefs with Apple's App Store is the seemingly indiscriminate nature in which some updated apps are rejected, even after they've already been approved. (See: Tweetie and more recently, the Nine Inch Nails app.)

We now have a hard list of what'll get your app banned (pdf link) from Windows Marketplace for Mobile. For us, here are the biggies, though questions remain:

  • No VOIP apps using a carrier's data. (Will WiFi be OK?)
  • No apps that replace or modify the default dialer, SMS or MMS apps.
  • No apps with an OTA download of over 10MB. (Not sure if that's the app itself, or downloading within the app for, say, a podcatcher or the dreaded torrent downloader.)
  • No apps that change the default browser, search client, or media player on the device. (Does that mean no Opera or Skyfire, which let you choose to set them as the default browser? No Kinoma Play, Core Player or the like for multimedia?)

That said, we have absolutely no indication that Windows Mobile 6.5 would bar you from installing apps from outside the Marketplace. None. The following list is just what will keep an app out of the Marketplace. Interestingly, the list doesn't include any mention of prohibiting any "objectionable content," except for in advertising within apps, which must follow standard Microsoft practices (pdf). Does that mean anything goes with regards to content? We're likely to see some clarification in the weeks ahead.

Check out the fine print after the break.

Prohibited Application Types:

1. Applications that are or distribute alternate marketplaces for content types (applications, games, themes etc.) that are sold or otherwise distributed through Windows® Marketplace for Mobile.

2. Applications that link to, incent users to download, or otherwise promote alternate marketplaces for content types that are sold or otherwise distributed through Windows Marketplace for Mobile.

3. Applications that promote or link users to a website, or contain functionality within the application itself, which encourages or requires the user to purchase or pay to upgrade the application outside of Windows® Marketplace for Mobile.

4. Applications that enable VoIP (Voice over IP) services over a mobile operator network.

5. Applications that sell, link to, or otherwise promote mobile voice plans.

6. Applications that display advertising that does not meet the Microsoft Advertising Creative Acceptance Policy Guide http://advertising.microsoft.com/creative-specs.

7. Applications that replace, remove or modify the default dialer, SMS, or MMS interface.

8. Applications that change the default browser, search client, or media player on the device.

9. Applications with an OTA (over the air) download >10 MB.

10. Applications that run code outside Microsoft runtimes (native, managed, and widgets)

11. Applications that publish a user’s location information to any other person without first having received the user’s express permission (opt-in) to do so, and that do not provide the user a means of opting out of having their location information published.

12. Applications that publish a user’s data from their mobile device to any other person without first having received the user’s express permission (opt-in) to do so, and that do not provide the user a means of opting out of having their data published. A “user’s data” includes, without limit, contacts, photos, SMS or other text communication, browsing history, location information, and other data either stored on the mobile device or stored in the “cloud” but accessible from the
mobile device