Surge, a proxy tool for iOS that gained its users by word-of-mouth, will be pulled from the App Store, according to its creator Yachen Liu, also known as ‘Blankwonder‘.

Released 4 weeks ago, this $9.99 utility app equiped iOS 9 with a stable https and socks5 proxy connections and a fully customizable net traffic filter and monitor.

In a comment posted on Twitter regarding the removal, he cited “reasons known to everyone”, for the takedown. He will pull Surge down 3 days after the latest update goes live, then replace it with a version lacking the proxy function.

The Beijing-based freelance coder also said the move doesn’t mean the end of Surge, he will continue to maintain the functionality of Surge for people who have already bought and downloaded the app.

Chinese authorities have been repeatedly disrupting VPNs over, and over. Earlier this year, Clowwindy, the author of cross-platform socks5 proxy Shadowsocks, was ordered by the government to discontinue this project and delete all the offending code from GitHub.

Surge takes advantage of a new feature in iOS 9 called the VPN extension API, which allows the use of proxy protocols that were not previously in the iOS VPN support list. Cisco also implemented this feature in their latest AnyConnect client.


Mr. Liu went to some lengths to avoid trouble from the government: the app is in English ( 3rd party Chinese language tutorials were posted online) and the price is quite high compared to most of the Chinese-made apps.

Unfortunately the language exclusivity and price weren’t enough to keep Surge out of the top-10 rankings for utility apps on the Chinese App Store. According to app analytics company App Annie, Surge never fells from the top 10 utilities by both downloads and total gross payments.

surge app annie

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