Joe Hewitt quits iPhone development because of Apple

Joe Hewitt.Joe Hewitt’s been unhappy with and outspoken about Apple’s app approval process since about the time he started working on the Facebook app. Well he’s finally had enough. According to a recent, tweet he’s done working on the app and ready to move on.

Time for me to try something new. I’ve handed the Facebook iPhone app off to another engineer, and I’m onto a new project.

Hewitt also said in very clear language that he left iPhone development because of Apple. Speaking to TechCrunch he said, “My decision to stop iPhone development has had everything to do with Apple’s policies. I respect their right to manage their platform however they want, however I am philosophically opposed to the existence of their review process.” As are a lot of people, but to this point no one with Hewitt’s resume has made the same decision (Arrington left the iPhone for a different reason and he’s not a developer).

Hewitt’s in a better position to “quit” then some developers, though. He’s got a swanky gig at Facebook, where he’ll still be developing after his announcement. A house like Tapulous, on the other hand, is making enough money off the App Store that it’s unlikely it will leave, and we probably wouldn’t hear about one of its developers quitting because of a philosophical opposition like Hewitt’s.

Instead we’ll probably continue to see the trickle of policy changes Apple has made over the last several months. The most recent allows developers to see real time status updates about the app, so when it’s sitting in “waiting for review” you can start throwing around some lawsuits.