Flappy Bird: eBay Takes off iPhone 5S with Pre-Installed Game; Legal Action Scared Dong Nguyen?

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By Aditya Bhat | February 11, 2014 7:27 PM EST

A day after Flappy Bird went off Google Play and iTunes Store, the game has surfaced on eBay, as the craze over it does not seem to die down. A used iPhone 5S that has Flappy Bird game installed is selling for nearly $100,000 on the site. 

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Flappy Bird has been taken off the stores.

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A seller (pindrus) is pitching his 16 GB iPhone 5S that has Flappy Bird as a pre-installed app for $99,900. Though he had started the auction with a base price of $650, the auction that started on 9 February had 22 bidders, making 74 bids, hiking the bid to $99,900. 

However, the auction has now been removed since mid-day Monday. "EBay took it down. They said that you can't sell phones with apps. Which doesn't make sense to me because every iPhone has apps and they sell millions of them on EBay," Los Angeles Times quoted Vasil Kiniv, the seller of the device. 

As eBay did not clarify why they removed it, Kiniv had to call the online retailer asking for reasons. He was reportedly given different reasons by different representatives at eBay.

"They didn't really make sense on exactly why they removed it," he said. "Kept changing their reason. First it was because they don't approve of the item yet because it's so new that they don't know if it should sell for that much. And then they said that it was violating Apple terms."

Dong Nguyen, the developer of the hit mobile game where players have to guide the fluffy bird through pipes reminding us of Mario Bros. took down the game after tweeting that he could not take it anymore and people were "overusing" the app. The game was billed as notoriously difficult with simplistic designs that wooed masses towards it. Flappy Bird had topped the list of free game apps on both Google Play and iTunes Stores.

Legal Actions Scared Dong Nguyen?

It is likely that the app was removed following legal actions by various developers, even though Nguyen clarified that his decision to take down the game had nothing to do with legal issues.  

A couple of Nguyen's friends had told Reuters that he had received a warning letter from Nintendo. Flappy Bird has pipes and environment that resembles Mario Bros of Nintendo. Nintendo refused to comment on the letter and called it a rumor.

Nguyen had told in an earlier interview with VnExpress that he had got emails from developers, who accused him of copying features from their apps. He had denied that charge and even clarified it in a tweet that the game was written completely by him and he had not copied it from anyone. 

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(Photo: Google Play / )
Flappy Bird has been taken off the stores.
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