Join us at TNW Conference 2022 for insights into the future of tech →

Inside money, markets, and Big Tech

This article was published on August 6, 2008

The $1000 iPhone app: lighten up bloggers, it’s only art

The $1000 iPhone app: lighten up bloggers, it’s only art
Ernst-Jan Pfauth
Story by

Ernst-Jan Pfauth

Ernst-Jan Pfauth is the former Editor in Chief of Internet at NRC Handelsblad, as well as an acclaimed technology author and columnist. He a Ernst-Jan Pfauth is the former Editor in Chief of Internet at NRC Handelsblad, as well as an acclaimed technology author and columnist. He also served as The Next Web’s blog’s first blogger and Editor in Chief, back in 2008. At De Correspondent, Ernst-Jan serves as publisher, fostering the expansion of the platform.

While European techies were sleeping last night, the American ones discovered a rather absurd iPhone app. It’s called I Am Rich and has two remarkable characteristics. One: it only lets a red diamond glow on your screen – sometimes a secret mantra appears. Two: the price $999.99. Will developer Armin Heinrich make his fortune with this shiny app?

I Am RichWhether he does or not, he DID get some tech bloggers angry. They think the I Am Rich app is provoking serious developers who don’t manage to get their app in the Apple app store. MG Siegler from VentureBeat calls on Apple to “wake up or grow up”. Dan Frommer from Silicon Alley Insider notes:

The upside for Apple: $300, or 30%, of all purchases. The downside: Good luck enforcing that “all sales final” policy on this scam.

Although I understand where these frustrations are coming from, I’d like to call on these bloggers to take it all a bit more light-heartedly. After all we’re talking about a company here of which the CEO once said experimenting with LSD was “one of the two or three most important things [he had] done in [his] life.” Experiments like I Am Rich keep Apple interesting. It’s a form of art, you can interpreter it however you want to.

See it as a protest against the lifestyle IT girls like Paris Hilton. A way to tone down the iPhone fuzz. Or.., it’s a genius parody on all these folks who have been using their iPhone in a somewhat too showy way – waiting for the utter satisfying experience of someone asking… “wow, is that an iPhone…?”

Update: TechCrunch has a confusing update on the story