Apple removes MetaQuotes’ MT4 and MT5 trading apps from its App Store
Social media has been abuzz this weekend, with reports that at some point late this past week Apple removed the popular MetaTrader 4 (MT4) and MetaTrader 5 (MT5) trading apps from its App Store.
The removal of MT4 and MT5 from the App Store does not seem to be affecting those in the Apple / iOS mobile environment (iPhone, iPad) who have already downloaded the apps to their devices. However it is unlikely that those users will be able to download future updates or upgrades or patches to their devices.
MT4 and its more recent cousin MT5 are creations of MetaQuotes, a Cyprus based fintech software developer which has a more-than-50% market share in the online trading platform market among online FX and CFD brokers, and their retail trader clients.
Neither Apple nor MetaQuotes have commented on the removal, or the reason(s) for the removal of MT4 and MT5 from the App Store. (FNG has reached out to various senior sources at MetaQuotes, who at the time of writing have not replied).
Regarding the reasons that Apple removed MT4 and MT5, there has been much speculation being discussed online over the past number of hours, with much of the discussion centering on Apple removing other apps with ties to Russia. While MetaQuotes is based in Limassol, Cyprus, the company has its origins in Russia and its founder and CEO Renat Fatkhullin, along with his brother Lenar Fatkhullin who serves as Marketing Director for the company, are Russian.
Another possible reason put forth is based on another recent Apple trend, of removing apps for which Apple has received a certain amount of complaints, either regarding the apps themselves or how they are used. Forbes senior tech writer Cyrus Farivar ran an article earlier this month entitled How One Man Lost $1 Million To A Crypto ‘Super Scam’ Called Pig Butchering, covering a scam where the scammers got retail traders to download MetaTrader as part of the scam.
While MetaQuotes itself was obviously not at all involved in the scam, the Forbes article quotes Apple spokesperson Adam Dema who told Forbes that “the company is investigating complaints about MetaTrader, and will take additional action to protect App Store users if necessary.”
The article also outlined how MetaQuotes allows licensees of MT4/MT5 to use a particular plug-in, known as Virtual Dealer, which can be used by scammers to “manipulate market prices, and simulate account balances, profits or losses.” According to the US / Singapore based Global Anti-Scam Organization (GASO), MetaQuotes has little to no rules or policies to prevent their license holders from using third party plug-in software, such as Virtual Dealer.
Another trend we’ve noticed in the past few hours are a number of “opportunists” looking to take advantage of the situation. On Twitter there are a number of offers of iPhones for sale having MT4 or MT5 already preloaded, for $5,000 and up. A number of MetaQuotes competitors have also been active posting “try our alternative trading platform” type posts.
We will continue to cover this story as it unfolds.