More than six months after Apple’s controversial Bitcoin wallet ban, Blockchain is back in the App Store with a new wallet.
In February, Blockchain was the only Bitcoin wallet remaining in the App Store after Apple deleted Coinbase in November 2013 and BitPak back in 2012.
That is, until CEO Nicolas Cary got a message from Apple stating Blockchain had been “removed from the App Store due to an unresolved issue.”
Apple never did elaborate further on that statement, but for reasons we can only speculate on, the tech giant relaxed its “purchasing and currency” policies this June immediately following its Worldwide Developer’s Conference 2014. The update states:
“Apps may facilitate transmission of approved virtual currencies provided that they do so in compliance with all state and federal laws for the territories in which the app functions.”
That shift was a signal to Cary to begin working on the next generation of the Blockchain wallet, he told Coindesk. Built from scratch, the new app not only allows users to exchange bitcoins from wallet to wallet like the former version, but also to make purchases from the growing list of merchants who now accept Bitcoin payments.
With 1.9 million users, Blockchain is the most popular Bitcoin wallet available. However, Apple’s newly relaxed policy may lure competitors into trying to create a better one.
(Apple has not yet returned ReadWrite’s request for comment.)