Apple announces App Store Improvements for more Quality

Posted in September 2016 by Silke Glauninger

App Marketing

Apple just sent an email to registered developers to inform them about some significant App Store improvements suggested by the developer community. With now more than 2 million apps available on the Apple App Store Apple thinks it’s about time for some clean out. Starting with September 7, 2016 (which will also be the date of Apple’s next media event), they announced to start an ongoing process of evaluating and removing apps in the App Store.

Apple wants more quality in its app stores

”We love helping customers discover innovative, useful, and exciting apps on the App Store. […] Quality is extremely important to us.” Apple wrote. Apple counts 130 billion downloads ever since the App Store was launched back in 2008. According to Apple’s last counting, they offer about 2 million iOS apps and around 100.000 new and updated apps get submitted each week. However, many of them are never downloaded or were probably built on an older version of iOS and were never updated or don’t work at all. So it’s time for some App Store improvements. This means Apple plans to remove “abandoned” or “problematic” apps which do not follow their current review guidelines from the App Store. According to the email, however, app developers obviously get informed about issues found with their app.

Character limitations for app names implemented

The new App Store Improvements do not stop at abandoned apps, but Apple is also going to muck out apps with spamming app names.

65 % of all iOS app downloads are results of organic App Store search. This makes the App Store Search the most common way for users to discover apps in the App Store. Many developers, therefore, stuff their app names with promising keywords. This commonly results in inaccurate search results as some developers include keywords not directly related to their app. Long app names, furthermore, are not fully displayed on the App Store. According to Apple, this provides no user value and creates bad user experience, which brought them to the decision to limit the app title field. This means, the length of your app name on App Store Connect (iTunes Connect) is now limited to no longer than 50 characters.

Prepare your app for App Store Improvements

In addition to the implementation of search ads, Apple updated their App Store Review Guidelines with details on subscriptions, SiriKit and iMessage.

Apple will start reviewing existing apps in all categories on the App Store on September 7, 2016. If an issue was found with your app, you will get informed by the App Store team. After then, you have 30 days to submit an update in order to keep your app on the App Store. If you don’t fix all necessary changes asked by the App Store team, your app will be removed from the App Store until you submit an update. Apps, that already crash on launch will be removed immediately. The character limitation for app names from now on applies to any app, that gets updated or newly submitted to App Store Connect (iTunes Connect) from now on. So better make sure to prepare your app for App Store improvements.

Here are some useful resources:

Silke Glauninger
Silke is Marketing Manager at App Radar. When not writing about app marketing, you can find her looking for new places to explore or watching series with a cup of tea and chocolate.

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