I Am Rich

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I Am Rich
I Am Rich sale screen.png
Original author(s) Armin Heinrich[1]
Initial release August 5, 2008 (2008-08-05)
Discontinued 1.0 / August 6, 2008 (2008-08-06)
Development status Prohibited
Written in Objective-C
Operating system iOS
Size 0.1 MB
Available in English
Type Novelty Software

I Am Rich is an iOS application which was formerly distributed using the App Store, and developed by Armin Heinrich. When launched, the screen only contains a glowing red gem, and an icon that when pressed, displays the following mantra in large text:

I am rich
I deserv [sic] it
I am good,
healthy &
successful

The application is described as "a work of art with no hidden function at all", with its only purpose being to show other people that they were able to afford it, making it a Veblen good. I Am Rich was sold on the App Store for 999.99 United States dollars, 799.99 euros, and 599.99 pounds sterling, the highest price Apple allows for App Store content.[1][2] The application was removed from the App Store by Apple Inc. without explanation the day following its release, on August 6, 2008 (2008-08-06).

Purchases[edit]

I saw this app with a few friends and we jokingly clicked 'buy' thinking it was a joke, to see what would happen. ... THIS IS NO JOKE...DO NOT BUY THIS APP AND APPLE PLEASE REMOVE THIS FROM THE APP STORE

One customer's complaint for I Am Rich[2]

While the application was available, eight people bought it, at least one of whom claimed to have done so accidentally. Six US sales at $999.99 and two European ones for €799.99 netted between $5,600–5,880 for developer Armin Heinrich and $2,400–2,520 for Apple. In correspondence with the Los Angeles Times, Heinrich told the newspaper that Apple had refunded two purchasers of his app, and that he was happy not to have dissatisfied customers.[2][3]

Reception[edit]

Discussing the app on Silicon Alley Insider website, Dan Frommer described the program as a "scam", "worthless", and finally "a joke that smells like a scammy rip-off" on August 5, 6, and 8, respectively.[3][4][5] Without purchasing the app, FOXNews.com's Paul Wagenseil guessed that the secret mantra was "German for 'Sucker!'" (as Heinrich is German).[1][3] Wired magazine's Brian X. Chen described I Am Rich as a waste of money to "prove you're a jerk", and contrasted the expenditure with donating to cancer foundations and Third-World countries.[6]

Heinrich told the Los Angeles Times' Mark Milian that he had received correspondence from satisfied customers, "I've got e-mails from customers telling me that they really love the app [... and that they had] no trouble spending the money."[2]

References[edit]