Apple Abolishes Crypto Mining on its Devices

Apple's new developer guidelines for apps explicitly forbid the deployment of software that mines cryptocurrencies.

People who mined on their Apple devices might have a little trouble doing so in the future as the company decided to enact an outright ban on all mining apps in the App Store. New developer guidelines posted by Apple no longer allow apps that mine cryptocurrencies, citing concerns regarding power usage.

“Design your app to use power efficiently. Apps should not rapidly drain battery, generate excessive heat, or put unnecessary strain on device resources. Apps, including any third-party advertisements displayed within them, may not run unrelated background processes, such as cryptocurrency mining,” the company wrote.

The exception to this ban is, as section 3.1.5 (b) suggests, apps that do not directly mine for coins on the device but instead do so through other means, such as through the cloud.

Wallets, exchanges, and ICO apps are completely fine by Apple, as long as the latter come from established banks, securities firms, or other companies registered with regulatory authorities.

Another ban was also placed on apps that reward people with cryptocurrencies for completing tasks “such as downloading other apps, encouraging others to download, posting to social networks, etc.”

Reports of cryptocurrency mining malware for smartphones came since late October last year when Trend Micro spotted two particular pieces of software that would make heavy use of a phone’s battery.

Usually, users do not voluntarily install mining apps on their phones because they’re not very effective or profitable. Apple’s primary concern appears to be damage to devices since it forbade any apps that drain battery considerably.

As malware developers encounter more adversity from smartphone operating system manufacturers, we might see them start to steer clear of this ecosystem and maintain their focus on the desktop market where efforts would be better rewarded given the higher-powered GPUs and CPUs on servers and mid-range desktop systems.