Citing mounting evidence of a “public health crisis,” Apple removed all vaping-related apps from its App Store Friday, multiple news outlets reported.
Although the tech giant has never allowed the sale of tobacco or vaping cartridges via apps, some of the 181 now banned apps permitted the user to control settings – such as temperature – on vaping devices, The Washington Post reported.
“We’ve updated our App Store Review Guidelines to reflect that apps encouraging or facilitating the use of these products are not permitted,” Apple told CNBC in a statement. “As of today, these apps are no longer available to download.”
According to the CDC, vaping-related illnesses have killed at least 42 people and forced the hospitalization of nearly 2,200 people in 49 states with pneumonia like symptoms.
“We’re constantly evaluating apps, and consulting the latest evidence to determine risks to users’ health and well-being,” Apple spokesman Fred Sainz said in a statement.
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