Apple Continues War on Notification Center Widgets, Asks 'Drafts' to Remove Note Creation Feature

Discussion in 'MacRumors.com News Discussion' started by MacRumors, Dec 2, 2014.

  1. MacRumors macrumors bot

    MacRumors

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    [​IMG]


    Apple is continuing to sort out its nebulous policies on Notification Center widgets, and has today told Drafts developer Agile Tortoise that the app's widget is not allowed to be used to create drafts or open the Drafts app.

    In a tweet, developer Greg Pierce says that he's been asked to re-submit Drafts without functionality for opening the app or creating a new note, which essentially removes all of the features of the Notification Center Widget.
    Drafts 4, which was first introduced in October as an update to the existing Drafts app, is a popular note taking and text capture app that lets users post to a variety of social networks and perform various actions with notes like creating calendar events, emails, messages, and more.

    Like many other apps that have Notification Center widgets, the Drafts app widget lets users open the app directly, create a new draft, or create a new draft from what's on the clipboard. It has very little functionality in the Notification Center aside from simply opening up the Drafts app, which in the past, has seemed like an acceptable use of the Notification Center.

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    Pierce, however, says that he's been told that the Today view in the Notification Center is "for information presentation only," a point of view that would rule out nearly all Notification Center apps. As Pierce points out, there are several similar apps that offer the exact same widget function as Drafts, such as Evernote, which also allows users to launch the Evernote app and new notes and other content from within the Notification Center.

    Drafts is one of a number of apps that have faced confusing rules and restrictions delivered by Apple's app review team. Back in October, Apple told the PCalc developers that calculator functions were not allowed in the Notification Center before changing its mind, and just a few weeks ago, Neato was told that it would have to remove the note taking functionality from its Notification Center widget.

    Apple's App Extension Guidelines suggest that Notification Widgets should have a "simple, streamlined UI," and "a limited number of interactive items," but its vague language has led developers to spend time and effort creating a variety of useful functions that are ultimately disallowed as Apple aims to refine how it wants the Notification Center to be used.

    It is not clear why Drafts has been singled out by Apple's app review team as it offers the same functionality as other widgets, but if the Drafts widget is removed, it's possible that many other similar widgets could be in danger of being in violation of the Notification Center widget rules.

    Drafts can be downloaded from the App Store for $9.99. [Direct Link]

    Article Link: Apple Continues War on Notification Center Widgets, Asks 'Drafts' to Remove Note Creation Feature
     
  2. macintologist macrumors 6502

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    #2
    If you want out of control UIs from an out of control mobile OS, you are more than free to buy a OnePlus One or a Samsung Galaxy.
     
  3. 0x100 macrumors regular

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    Why not just let users install whatever and devs make whatever?
     
  4. JoEw macrumors 68000

    JoEw

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    #4
    The goal of the app store guidelines should be to ensure that malware/viruses and information stealing apps are not on the app store. This is just Apple's control freak.
     
  5. Dan70 macrumors regular

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    #5
    What annoys me the most is that they are letting the app through with these features initially. If they said no from the start I'd be less annoyed and understanding.

    The fact they're taking U-turns is pathetic and they need to sort things out. Draw a line now and not annoy more people with these stupid rules that seem to apply whenever and wherever they like.
     
  6. frisken macrumors member

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    #6
    I'm surprised at the number of people who visit an Apple rumours website who are so misinformed about Apple's vision ...
     
  7. christarp macrumors 6502

    christarp

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    #7
    Because if an unknowing user installs an app that hinders the experience of iOS that makes iOS look bad. The average user will be like "Why does my phone look like this now!?" rather than "Why does this app make my phone look like this now?"
     
  8. TsunamiTheClown macrumors 6502a

    TsunamiTheClown

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    #8
    If someone owned this particular application, and that someone refused to update such application, would that person then be able to keep the nefarious widget features?
     
  9. akidd macrumors regular

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  10. 0x100 macrumors regular

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    What if Apple keeps their restricted app-store but allows installing packages from for example dropbox? Several mobile OSs supports this.
     
  11. Brian Y, Dec 2, 2014
    Last edited: Dec 2, 2014

    Brian Y macrumors 68040

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    Then we end up with a load of crap apps, malware and other stuff.

    I don't see what devs are finding so difficult about the Today view panel. The name "Today View" should be clear enough - it's for information related to "today". E.g. what is the status of my app "right now".

    I partly blame apple for this though - they should have applied the rules consistently from the start, instead of annoying people months later.
     
  12. Arran macrumors 601

    Arran

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    #12
    Apple Continues War on Notification Center Widgets

    I think it's a worthwhile "War". If an app is THAT important to a user, stick it in the dock!

    Pity Apple didn't get it straight from the outset, however. Would've saved them a black eye.
     
  13. 0x100 macrumors regular

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    #13
    Why doesn't Apple keep their restricted app store and put a setting in for installing non store apps under a security tab in the settings?
     
  14. Avenged110 macrumors 6502

    Avenged110

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    #14
    Of course. I do that all the time. In fact, most apps I use daily are "outdated" but IMHO significantly better and more stable. Different motive, same outcome.
    -----

    I'm still a proponent of keeping things locked down but providing an avenue that you have to really know what you're doing, (so the usual Apple user or people who don't want to be bothered by it can't find it) but an avenue nonetheless for doing what you want. Similar to jailbreaking but officially supported. So a better experience.
     
  15. brianvictor7 macrumors 65816

    brianvictor7

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  16. EnderTW macrumors 6502a

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    This is a fumble for Apple, big time. Again like others, they need to do a better job deciding what things can and cannot be in. This isn't some hidden feature that the developer tried to sneak through, it's obviously in the today view/etc, the decision should have been made prior to customers utilizing the feature that will now have to be taken away.

    You can't be making these decisions half way into the launch of an application's life-cycle. As an iOS Developer, you want to provide the best and most efficient use of your applications, but if Apple is allowing one and not the other, or isn't consistent, you're wasting people's time and money when they're developing these features.

    Ty MR for bringing to light this hypocritical behavior, hopefully Cook shakes up that department and brings some consistency to the decisions.
     
  17. macduke macrumors G4

    macduke

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    #17
    This is probably just another reviewer making a poor choice and then Apple will backtrack on this. No way they're going to make developers like Evernote change their apps. Also I'm pretty sure that just about every app I have in notification center takes me back to their app when I tap on them. Yes, I just checked, all of them do except for a couple of the system monitoring utilities.

    I find it funny that Apple keeps calling out useful stuff like this and yet allows all of these developers to submit widgets with widely varying aesthetics. It's rare to have two widgets that have consistent margins, or use the system font, or don't have some kind of weird layout issue, especially on the larger iPhones. It's so inconsistent and looks horrible. They should tighten up their guidelines for that first.
     
  18. Arran macrumors 601

    Arran

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    #18
    I don't think you can have all 3!
     
  19. Rogifan macrumors Core

    Rogifan

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    #19
    How are these things being allowed in notification center in the first place?
     
  20. Greg. macrumors 6502

    Greg.

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  21. Arran macrumors 601

    Arran

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    #21
    Because somebody at Apple was asleep.

    Same again.
     
  22. EnderTW macrumors 6502a

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    #22
    Majority of the consumers using a phone do not need an application that is outside Apple's boundaries of what is acceptable. This is something I completely agree with Apple, even if it limits some functionality that can only come from something like a jailbreak.

    Chances are if you're looking for that functionality, Apple believes you're better served by Android or Windows, who both are starting to become more like Apple in the way they control the way apps are being made. It could also be said, you could jailbreak to get those features. Chances are, if you're the type of person who will know what jailbreaking does, you're also the type of person who would be able to handle if something went wrong with their phone or at the very least, if a jailbroken app is causing issues, know how to uninstall and/or reimage the phone.

    The issue is Apple allowing developers to release these apps, to paying customers, who then are forced to use a "reduced" version of the application, versus Apple getting their act together and stating from the get-go, before the customers use the application, no this isn't acceptable.
     
  23. jake0112 macrumors newbie

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    #23
    I'd believe that, just today someone on my Facebook feed was blaming Apple for and crappy iPhone because some "iTube Player" app was deleting their downloaded youtube videos, and only playing half songs.

    Yes that was apples fault
     
  24. Aetles macrumors regular

    Aetles

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    #24
    Then tell me who is informed about it. Neither Apples reviewers (who has approved a lot of interactive widgets so far) nor the third party developers seems to know this "vision" you talk about.

    There are many, many cases where the whole approval process seems vague and random and not at all conforming to a clear vision or even Apples own guidelines. It's more like they're making it up as they go.
     
  25. 0x100 macrumors regular

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    #25
    I have a question for the entire forum.

    Since iOS only allows installs from the app store, would you get a computer that you could only get software through the app store with unless you jailbroke it?

    Think of it like a Mac that only has the app store for software and nothing else, I think the comparison works great. An Iphone is a computer like a mac and it runs some glued together Mac Os code like a mac, but doesn't allow installs from other places than the app store.
     

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