€799.99 iPhone app removed from App Store

8 Aug 2008

UPDATED: It seems even Apple was offended by the ‘I Am Rich’ application, which was on sale in the App Store for the princely sum of €799.99.The app has since disappeared and dilligent searching for it on the store has proved fruitless.

Apple, fulfilling its role as the Willy Wonka of the tech world, hasn’t yet commented on the event. However, in correspondence with the LA Times, I Am Rich’s German developer, Armin Heinrich, said he has not heard from Apple regarding the app’s take-down and commented: “I have no idea why they did it and am not aware of any violation of the rules to sell software on the App Store.”

But let’s get down to brass tacks on this issue people: what I want to know is, did anyone actually buy the damn thing?! I was hoping, under the increasingly feeble banner of human intelligence, that the answer would be no. But it seems that a total of eight people, six from the US, one from France and one from Germany, have parted with cash and their own sense of reality, for I Am Rich.


More money than sense? You’ll have an iPhone 3G then. And you’ll probably want to accessorise your new purchase with the ‘I Am Rich’ app, which debuted on the Apple App store just two days ago, yours for a mere €799.99.

So what bang do you get for your equivalent 999.99 bucks with this piece of software by Armin Heinrich? For that price you’d expect I Am Rich to turn iPhones into mini, chihuahua-walking Hummers all circling around routes pre-planned on Google Maps.

Alas, no. I Am Rich displays a rotating red gem with accompanying glow. That’s it. “The red icon on your iPhone or iPod touch always reminds you (and others when you show it to them) that you were rich enough to afford this,” proclaims the marketing blurb for I Am Rich.

But be warned if you take a trip to the App Store for a spot of online rubbernecking as I did. I nearly ended up buying I Am Rich, thanks to hamfisted clicking action around the oh so clickable Buy App button.

The creator of I Am Rich may be hoping to get lucky from a few tickled millionaires but it’s more likely he’s after a slice of viral marketing, of which he is almost certainly getting his fair share at the minute. “If it’s to [sic] expensive for you – check out my other apps – they are all much cheaper,” he suggests on the information page for I Am Rich in the App Store.  

Fascinatingly enough, his other app is Calc Pro, “the pro version of the calculator”. So while you’re splashing out on I Am Rich, you might as well chip in for a professional calculator to work out what percentage of you is wholly composed of moron.

While it’s not yet known if any foolhardy individual, or Paris Hilton, has actually slapped down dough for I am Rich, my advice is hold onto your credit card and wait for Iconfactory’s Craig Hockenberry’s plea to come true: “I’ve got 99¢ for the first person to write an I’m not Stupid app that shows the same artwork”.

By Jennifer Yau

Pictured: I Am Rich application on the Apple App Store