Apollo, (a popular user respecting reddit client for iOS) will close down

Apollo, a very popular 3rd party Reddit client for iOS announced today that they will be closing down as a result of the Reddit’s soon to be implemented changes to the API and prohibitive pricing which make it infeasible for them to continue to exist.

Why it matters: Apollo is the most popular Open Source and Privacy respecting reddit client for iOS. For those who use it, it allowed a superior (ad free, user respecting, reasonably private) alternative to Reddit’s official advertisement-cluttered, ‘engagement’ driven, proprietary app. All 3rd party clients which use the API will be affected, not just Apollo, and we will likely see many more shutting down in the coming months if nothing changes.

Why it is happening: Reddit recently announced last minute changes to the API (I believe they gave developers something like 30 days notice) which appear to many as an indirect way to eliminate or at the very least undermine/handicap 3rd party Reddit clients. The main change is charging a prohibitively high fee for using the Reddit API. At the same time they’ve introduced some other changes which will handicap 3rd party apps (for instance prohibiting NSFW content outside of the official app).

It has been suggested by many that this is likely an attempt by Reddit to make themselves look more attractive to investors ahead of the upcoming IPO. Seen from this context its a win-win for them, either they force 3rd party developers to pay exorbitant fees or they force these app developers out of business and gain users in the official app.

What can be done: Reddit is a corporation, with an advertising and engagement based business model, seeking to maximize profit. Users, moderators, third party app developers, don’t have a lot of formal power, despite being what Reddits value is based on. That said, informally the community does have some leverage (since Reddit and all social media depends on our attention and our content for it’s value).

There will be a ‘blackout’ of many many subreddits beginning June 12. This would be a good time to take a break from Reddit, or better yet, for those of us who use Reddit regularly, it is a good time to re-evaluate our relationship to it, and reflect on whether it makes sense to cut back on it or eliminate it from our digital diet (or at least our mobile digital diet).

Personally I don’t foresee leaving Reddit entirely in the short term, but I do plan to stop using it on mobile (when Infinity (android) and Apollo (iOS) cease working), and interact with it solely through a browser with ad & tracker blocking. I definitely don’t plan to install their tracker/ad laden proprietary mobile app, and will seek to limit the amount of time I use Reddit (this is just healthy, regardless of recent changes).

The announcement and the Apollo Developer’s long explanation of the events that led to this can be found here


I was never a fan of Reddit, but it’s really unfortunate how these indie devs are being treated. Christian mentioned he is expected to fork up ~$250,000 in refunds! Hopefully this situation encourages more communities to move to dedicated forums.

And by the way, Apollo isn’t open source. Some components like the Safari extension and backend server are, but the app as a whole is not.

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Thank you for pointing that out, I was mistaken about that. I edited my post.

Hopefully this situation encourages more communities to move to dedicated forums.

Forums such as this one are nice for what they are. But I think the thing that initially drew people to Reddit, and definitely the thing that keeps them there, even though most users feel the experience is not what it used to be is the convenience of having all of their communities integrated in one place. That is the part of Reddit that does provide value (to me personally). I’d love to see a platform that keeps that aspect of Reddit but is more user and community empowering.

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For better or for worse, I think Discord could capture a lot of Reddit’s audience if they allowed search engine indexing and public read-only access for at least forum channels. Many subreddits already have large, accompanying Discord servers.

This really sucks to be honest, given that probably 80% of my Reddit usage is via Apollo. Reddit not only killing Apollo but accusing him of blackmailing them in the process is all the reason I need to stop using Reddit entirely.

I left a comment inquiring whether he’d consider open-sourcing Apollo just because it’d be very cool, but it didn’t gain much traction. It’ll be a shame if it just disappears forever.



Apollo Backend just made public, "The goal of making the code for this repo available is to show that despite statements otherwise by Reddit...
by u/nightofgrim in apolloapp

Check which communites going dark: https://reddark.untone.uk

Use Privacy Frontends:


RedReader will be still alive thanks to the non-commecial accessibility exemption :

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Paying respect

Seriously though I am pretty bummed. I love Apollo and I tried the official Reddit app today and its pure digital cancer. Ads everywhere and no curated subreddit list. Just a stupid algorithm trying to show me crap I don’t want to see.

Can I use old.reddit in a PWA? I’m going to try…

I don’t believe Reddit is available as a PWA, but you could try to use the Mobile website, my limited experience using Reddit in a mobile browser has been frustrating, it seems like they built in a few friction points to push people to use their mobile app, and they are currently running an experiment where some users are blocked from using the mobile website completely (probably to test the viability of forcing people to use the mobile app / preventing people from using the mobile website like Whatsapp does).

You are correct. Just spent some time trying different solutions and nothing really was worth doing. I even looked at paying for reddit premium but $60 per year is pretty steep. $60 once…ok maybe. But annually? For an experience far inferior to Apollo and after this API gauging nonsense?

Nope. Hard pass. I think I’m just done with Reddit permanently.

Really unnecessary and sad. Reddit needs revenue and charging some fee for the API usage makes complete sense. I already was paying for Apollo and would be willing to pay more. But the amount of money reddit was trying to squeeze out of the third party apps was outrageous.

Reddit needs new leadership or we as an internet community need to let it die so something else can rise up to replace it. Here’s to hoping there is now a ‘find out’ phase for Reddit management.

Reddit is going on my domain blacklist I think…

To quote myself from the Patron Signal group:

very threatening to tell people they won’t be allowed to work for free for you anymore, very threatening indeed

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