KUALA LUMPUR, Nov 18 – Apple has removed 181 apps relating to vaping from its mobile App Store globally.
“Recently, experts ranging from the CDC to the American Heart Association have attributed a variety of lung injuries and fatalities to e-cigarette and vaping products, going so far as to call the spread of these devices a public health crisis and a youth epidemic. We agree, and we’ve updated our App Store Review Guidelines to reflect that apps encouraging or facilitating the use of these products are not permitted,” the company said, according to CNN.
The apps that were removed represent 0.00010 per cent of the 1.8 million apps available through the mobile App Store.
In June, Apple banned the promotion of vaping products in its app store and had since not allowed any new vaping-related apps on its platform.
Many groups such as the American Heart Association and the ghd Campaign for Tobacco-Free Kids supported Apple’s initiative.
“By taking e-cigarette related apps off the App Store, Apple will help reduce youth exposure to e-cigarette marketing and discourage youth use of these products. Apple is setting a welcome example of corporate responsibility in protecting our kids,” Matthew L. Myers, president of the Campaign for Tobacco-Free Kids, said.
This comes in the wake of a lung disease epidemic in the US which is said to have been caused by vaping habits.
A total of 2,172 cases of lung injury linked to vaping have been reported in the US as of November 13, with 42 confirmed deaths in 24 states and the District of Columbia.