How to instantly improve the App Store

Discussion in 'iOS Apps' started by dscuber9000, Sep 14, 2008.

  1. dscuber9000 macrumors 6502a

    Sep 16, 2007
    Indiana, US
    Lately I've been a little disappointed with the App Store. Sure, many outstanding third-party apps are available, and overall the App Store is unbelievable, but it just seems... very unorganized. So here are a few things that are really bugging me.

    Screening Process AFTER App is Finished

    This seems to be the current discussion about the app store. Due to the large amount of backlash, I'm sure Apple will change the way they review apps, but for now, the system is broken. If you expect developers to invest money into something on your platform, the least you could do is guarantee that it will actually see the light of day.

    Fix User Reviews System

    When there is an expensive app, there is not a single time-worthy review to look at. All I see is people complaining about the price. If I might actually want that app, I'll want to read up on it (since it is pricey) but there are not any useful reviews! The simple solution: Only let people review an app if they have downloaded it. I was slightly interested in the "Are You Smarter than a 5th Grader?" game, but I obviously want to see if it is good or not, but ALL I got was people complaining about the $8 price tag, and other people telling people not to review a game they haven't played yet. The user reviews system is broken. Fix it, Apple!

    Limit Multiple Apps on the Same Idea

    Of the 800+ games available on the iPhone and iPod touch, how many do you think are JUST Sudoku apps? It has to be at least fifty. Of the 180+ productivity apps, how many are simple To-Do Lists? It has to be at least thirty. Quite simply, they are flooding the App Store. They all cost the same price. No one makes money. Denying original app ideas for strange reasons is one thing, but denying quick-cash-in apps we've seen countless times before is another thing.

    Remove Under-Performing Apps After a While

    I'm not sure if Apple does this or not, but if an App just isn't selling, take it off the list. It has gotten to the point that you can't really navigate through games because:

    A.) You have to scroll through 800+ games.
    B.) A ton of them are Sudoku games

    Again, I'm not positive on whether Apple does this or not, but it is something that is needed.

    Add a demo feature to apps

    Another factor that is flooding the App Store with crap: Trial versions/demos/light versions. How about instead of having two separate apps for a full game and its trial, why not just have a "Try Now" button below the "Buy Now" button in the App Store and it downloads the demo instead? Not only will it clear out many pointless apps that aren't really apps, but it will surely encourage more developers to allow demos to their products.

    Quicken Update Process

    Occasionally when I look at descriptions of Apps I've already downloaded, they say "Coming soon until Apple approves: yada yada yada". So the developer is able to change the description time before Apple approves an update. Once I waited ten days for the update to actually come! Obviously Apple has to monitor updates just as closely as new apps, but I can't imagine that it takes so long to approve.


    Well, those are my gripes. Anyone agree/disagree?
  2. graemesangels macrumors member

    Feb 19, 2008
    For the most part I agree with what you're saying but I see a few problems. My biggest concern is with limiting the number of apps that repeat the same functionality. While I agree that there are too many sudoku apps who gets to decide which ones stay and which ones go? Furthermore how do they decide?

    The easiest solution would be to keep the ones that sell the best but that might just end up being the cheapest one not necessarily the most worthy one. They could also base it on ratings but we all now how much work the review system needs.

    While I don't necessarily enjoy deciding between 10 different sudoku apps I would rather read comparisons from a legitimate review site than have my choices limited. For now I think Apple should not limit apps that repeat functionality, merely ones that are poorly written or harmful.
  3. iFerd macrumors 6502a

    Jul 20, 2007
    I agree, except for:

    Limit Multiple Apps on the Same Idea, and
    Remove Under-Performing Apps After a While

    The richness of the third party applications, many of which don't interest a particular user but do interest others, is a good part of the reason for the (past) success of the Palm platform. Apple has a chance to do the same, and I don't think they get there by limiting much of anything. My crap application fills someone else's critical need. It's too hard to tell what will be useful to censor any of it.

    Making the App Store easier to navigate so you can get through everything efficiently is a good idea. Then if you don't like it, don't download it. The system, though, would clearly work best with a shareware (try-before-you buy) model. The appearance of free lite versions of several apps is a reasonable step in this direction. True shareware, though, provides a full featured test before the user has to decide whether to buy.

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