The App Store is always a bit of a crap shoot. Apple decides to reject or accept applications based on a variety of metrics that developers and customers aren't privy to. That's why, when NexStudios launched their iPot application for locating medical marijuana dispensaries, they had no idea if it would meet with acceptance. Steve Jobs is a famous supporter of LSD, but would Apple be willing to give even tacit support to still-controversial medical marijuana laws?
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According to the Digits Wall Street Journal blog, the answer was yes. The iPot app was approved, and it's been available for free download in the App Store since July. This basic download provides info on the location and operating hours of medical marijuana dispensaries in California. For $2 more, you can see reviews and ratings for various dispensaries.
Since its launch, iPot has had over 100,000 downloads. That's roughly 1/3rd of the total number of people prescribed medicinal marijuana in California. Considering the uncertain nature of the medi-pot industry, the iPot app represents one of the only ways for a dispensary to advertise itself on anything but a local level.
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Over the last few weeks, NexStudios has been working to expand their application into other states with medical marijuana laws. As the app continues to grow in popularity, it becomes more and more likely that NexStudios will have to deal with a legal hassle of some sort. Marijuana of all types is still illegal at the federal level, and dispensaries are raided off-and-on by the DEA. It will be interesting to see where Apple stands, when and if this app is challenged by the government.