Apple has booted off copycat versions of word-guessing game Wordle, as developers rush to cash in on the online sensation.
The website-only game was created by software engineer Josh Wardle, who wanted to create a free game for logophiles.
The game has flooded Twitter and Facebook timelines in recent weeks as players post their scores, and celebrities like Jimmy Fallon plug the game.
Wordle gives a player six chances to guess the day’s secret word, which has five letters, and the aim is to figure out the secret word with the fewest guesses.
Wardle has already said he has no intention of making any money from his snowballing success, having made the site originally for his word game-loving partner and snubbing developer requests.
Zack Shakked has released his own version of the game on the App Store, cashing in $29.99 for a premium account.
It was eventually removed by Apple, but not before thousands of keen gamers downloaded it.
Michael Gartenberg, tech analyst, and ex Apple Marketing Director, weighed in on the move, and said: “It’s good that Apple is getting rid of the those apps, especially in this case where the developer shamelessly copied someone else’s work, down to the interface, the name and then boasted about it on Twitter. The question remains, however, if it hadn’t received the wide press coverage it did, would Apple have remove it? The bigger question would seem to be can the App store maintain it has properly curated apps when things like this occur?”