I Am Rich’ for the iPhone

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I Am Rich

Consump­tion is a way of life in the United States of America. Whether it be food, drink, or the lat­est gad­get to splash across the wide-screen, plasma, high-definition tele­vi­sion screen, peo­ple of all walks of life are called upon to open their wal­lets to keep the econ­omy strong. It is a lifestyle.

In the midst of this lifestyle, the iPhone has risen to the top of the heap as the gad­get icon of the year for 2008. If you’re any­body, then you’ve got an iPhone and you flaunt it. The prob­lem is that almost any­one can afford an iPhone thanks to the price drop that accom­pa­nied the release of the 3G ver­sion ear­lier this summer.

So how do you stand out in the crowd if the entire crowd has an iPhone? Well, if you aren’t fab­u­lously wealthy, but just mildly rich, Armin Heinrich has just the appli­ca­tion for you. It’s called “I Am Rich”, and it will cost you a pal­try $999.99 USD. The author describes his application.

The red icon on your iPhone or iPod touch always reminds you (and others when you show it to them) that you were able to afford this. It’s a work of art with no hidden function at all. After pressing the (i) on the main page, a secret mantra will be shown. This may help you to to stay rich, healthy and successful.

I Am Rich screenshot

While some are out­raged at the idea of this appli­ca­tion being allowed on the Apple App Store, oth­ers think it is just plain ridicu­lous and stu­pid. I think the appli­ca­tion is a work of genius and is bound to gen­er­ate a few sales for the author ((However, it appears that the appli­ca­tion has been removed from the App Store)).

I have long felt that cor­po­rate America views con­sumers as walk­ing wal­lets. Based upon our behav­ior, I can see why this is the case. We pur­chase with reck­less aban­don. We fall prey to all forms of adver­tis­ing and mar­ket­ing, and if some­thing goes wrong with our prod­uct or expe­ri­ence, we gripe and complain.

Then we turn right back around and patron­ize the same com­pa­nies with­out a thought toward whether or not we have been heard. The art of the boy­cott has been lost in this coun­try. Let me say that again.

The Art of the Boycott is Lost

Just a lit­tle some­thing to think about. Morality based boy­cotts are com­mon on the end of the pro­duc­ers, but con­sumers have seem­ingly for­got­ten how to affect change in a com­pany. In America, tak­ing your dol­lar some­where else makes a com­pany take notice and can sway them to cor­rect the problems.

Try it some­time. If you receive less than sat­is­fac­tory ser­vice or a defec­tive prod­uct, take your busi­ness else­where. Not only does it get the mes­sage across, but it is a very empow­er­ing act.

But What About That iPhone App?

I was won­der­ing to myself what the mantra might be. I came up with the fol­low­ing idea.

  1. Develop an iPhone app that does noth­ing, but looks shiny
  2. Price it for exclu­siv­ity on the App Store
  3. Profit!

So what do You think the “I Am Rich” mantra is?

Update

The LA Times has writ­ten an arti­cle that says 8 peo­ple man­aged to pur­chase the “I Am Rich” appli­ca­tion before it was removed from the App Store. It also looks like the devel­oper wants to keep it listed and is hav­ing a hard time con­tact­ing Apple to get it back into the store.

Apple, which didn't respond to requests for comment, apparently had some problems with I Am Rich. After initially approving it for distribution, the company has since removed it from the store. Heinrich, a German software developer, has yet to hear back from Apple concerning the removal. "I have no idea why they did it and am not aware of any violation of the rules to sell software on the App Store," Heinrich said in an e-mail to The Times on Thursday. But Apple couldn't pull it down before curious aristocrats had purchased it -- eight times. Six people from the U.S., one from Germany and one from France dropped a grand for the gem in the first 24 hours it was available, Heinrich said. That's $5,600 in revenue for Heinrich and $2,400 for Apple, which collects 30% of each sale for "store upkeep." In the e-mail, Heinrich said there seemed to be a market for the program. "I am sure a lot more people would like to buy it -- but currently can't do so," Heinrich said. "The App is a work of Art and included a 'secret mantra' -- that's all."