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Santa Live isn't any more, as the iPhone application that bribed punters for good reviews is pulled from the Application Store for suggesting that Rudolf played his part in the homicide of Grandma.

The app, which showed a daily animation of Santa's preparations for Christmas, had attracted a small audience of child-equipped users who were distraught when Friday's clip was accompanied by the song Grandma Got Run Over By A Reindeer. This promoted a slew of complaints which have proved too much for the author, who has pulled the application from the virtual shelves.

The revelation that at least one developer has earned quarter of a million dollars from an iPhone application has prompted many to jump into the field, only to discover that it's not always quite that easy. Adam Majewski told the iPhone Savior site he'd spent $12,000 developing the application, mainly on 3D rendering, and sold a disappointing number of copies, so he was cutting his losses and trying to work out how to afford his own Christmas. Anyone who's already purchased Santa Live will still get their daily updates, but the application is no longer on sale.

Adam received "dozens" of abusive emails following his attempt to bribe reviewers, and the new wave of mail he got for including the joke song about the demise of Grandma was just too much. Clearly the poor man lacks the thick skin needed in these days of user-participation, but it only goes to show that even the touch of the iPhone can't turn every developer into a quarter-millionaire. ®

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