The rapper's app, Snoopify, allows users to decorate their photos with cartoons, including ones of his 'Golden Jay' joint

Fans of rapper Snoop Dogg – or Snoop Lion as he now calls himself – are paying almost $100 (£65) for the chance to adorn their photographs with an imaginary spliff. Price is no obstacle for the most devoted users of Snoop's new mobile app, where virtual "stickers" are sold for real money.

The software is called Snoopify: an app for iOS and Android that lets users "decorate their photos" with Snoop-related cartoons such as bling, fried chicken and walrus hats. Although the basic program is free, fans can pay $1.99 for a bundle of 24 more "stickers". Beyond that, there's a deluxe, standalone sticker that sells for $99.99: the Golden Jay, a hand-rolled cigarette emitting a wisp of rainbow smoke. "Dis is too much to handle!" reads the subtitle.

"There's no poetry behind it, it's just golden," Snoop's brand manager, Nick Adler, told the Wall Street Journal's Digits blog. They introduced the fancy joint last week. Within seven days it had been purchased at least 15 times – earning a neat $1,500 (£964). "I was shocked," Adler said. "But hey, this is a new world."

Even in real life, $99.99 is a lot to spend on marijuana: for smokers in Colorado, where the drug is legal, that's almost enough for a two-month supply. But Snoopify isn't selling a virtual joint so much as the ability to insert a virtual (golden) joint between a photographed person's lips. And for that, the market seems to be able to bear the price.

Besides, playing with virtual weed is much safer than smoking the real stuff. Just ask Snoop Lion: the rapper has experienced continuing legal problems due to his penchant for pot, and is currently banned from entering Norway.

That hasn't stopped him from touring, however. The 41-year-old has forthcoming dates in France, Portugal, Italy and beyond, promoting his reggae album, Reincarnated. He is also reportedly working on a new album, according to producer Symbolyc One, which will be the rapper's "last solo album as Snoop Dogg".

 © Guardian News and Media 2013