This is not the reappearance of the genuine Camera+ app

[UPDATED 09.04.10 02.50] If you’re looking for the real Camera+ app — and by that I mean the genuine Camera+ app from tap tap tap — it is not currently available in the App Store. Camera+ was recently pulled by Apple over a hack that allowed users to reprogram their iPhone volume buttons as a shutter release.

A new $1.99 app released Friday is called “Real Camera+” and it is anything but real. This is from developer Duan Baoping, who also released the app Premier Camera Flash — another app with shady marketing tactics. This is not the reappearance of the excellent original Camera+ app that garnered rave reviews. This is an attempt by a developer to cash in on name recognition, confusion, and ignorance of the original app’s removal. Avoid this app if you’re expecting to purchase the excellent original camera replacement app by tap tap tap.

Premier Camera Flash is a previous app of developer Duan Baoping. The app has 48 reviews. 44 of them are five-star reviews. One of them — the only review that doesn’t look suspect  — is a one star review and they also wrote an app review. The other 9 five-star written reviewers have only reviewed Premier Camera Flash and select apps by Imaging Luminary, LLC.

Premier Camera Flash is a clone of Imaging Luminary’s iNightShot app, which is no longer available in the App Store. Rebranding an app is a shady practice to get more downloads and sales of an older app, without investing much time or money in upgrading and adding new value-added features to the app.

After several hours in the App Store, “Real Camera+” now has 47 app reviews, nearly all of them five star reviews with three four star reviews. There are nine written reviews of “Real Camera+”. Eight of them are by reviewers who have written reviews of no other app. The other reviewer has also written a review for — you guessed it — Premier Camera Flash by Duan Baoping.

Way to game the App Store, dude. These all reek of shill reviews.

Since first writing this post, I’ve purchased and reviewed Real Camera+. I think it’s a bad app. Read my review here.

The full name of the original Camera+ app by tap tap tap is “Camera+… the ultimate photo app”. The confusing name of this knock off is “Real Camera+… the ultimate photography app”.

The similarities in the names are pretty sinister and I do not believe they are coincidental. A Google search or an App Store search for “Camera+” would point an unsuspecting buyer to this app. Unsuspecting buyers may not know the backstory or the difference between the two apps and drop the two dollars for this app.

“Real Camera+” may be a decent camera app — I don’t know — but it’s not the excellent Camera+ that buyers are expecting. This is an obvious ploy by an unscrupulous app developer to capitalize on name confusion and buyer ignorance. This app capitalizes on the reviews and reputation of the real Camera+. Regardless of how good this camera app may or may not be, just because of the past and present shady marketing tactics of this developer, “Real Camera+” is an app that should be avoided for many reasons.

“Real Camera+” may or may not be a decent camera app, but it’s not the one you’re looking for.