If you want to find the latest sales for the hottest apps on your iPhone, then it will have to be straight through the iOS App Store itself from here on out. Apple sent a loud and firm message that bargain hunting programs are no longer welcome through its service by removing the popular AppShopper app from its virtual shelves.

Creator Arnold Kim confirmed with The Next Web that his product was vaporized overnight because it runs in violation against a rule created in September designed to curb the existence of such apps.

The rule reads as such:

2.25 Apps that display Apps other than your own for purchase or promotion in a manner similar to or confusing with the App Store will be rejected

Although it was certainly not the only app of its kind to provide the service in question, AppShopper was by far the most popular and widely used. Axing it from existence can only mean Apple is planning to expel a wide array of similarly functioning apps in the near future. No doubt, this action will be loud enough to be heard by all as a warning shot, giving others the time needed to adjust and find other uses for their apps in the meantime.

Ben Guild, the creator of App Map, believes Apple is clamping down on app discovery in an attempt to be the sole provider of news on sales.

"I think it's pretty clear that Apple wants to caution companies away from building these sorts of Apps. App discovery is a really interesting space with tons of room for innovation, but perhaps it's a space that Apple itself wishes to solely focus on."

Guild's own App Map was approved by Apple for "providing significant alternate functionality."

In the meantime, AppShopper is still available at its official website and can be just as easily accessed through any functioning internet browser.