Apple limiting how many review pop-ups apps can show

15 June 2017, 01:24 | Shawn Tate

Apple has made efforts to reduce app review times over the previous year as part of its bigger efforts to make its App Store more developer-friendly. A new post on Medium from Johnny Lin, however, highlights that not all of that $70 billion is necessarily legitimate... Thousands of high-quality apps saturate the Apple iOS, and out of them, there are some which can charge you large amounts of money for nothing and you may have no clue about it.

Fixing its subscriptions requires much more than banning some keywords, though.

The app then, full of typing errors and vague language, offers up a "free trial" which users confirm via the iPhone's Touch ID fingerprint scanner. The only firm promise the App makes as far as its VPN service is concerned is to "change your device IP".

The app was published on the App Store on April 14, likely capitalizing on the recent U.S. congressional vote to allow ISPs to sell their subscribers' browsing history and other data without gaining user consent.

We've reached out to Apple for comment on this practice. One of the seller's other apps, "goSMS - Funny Messenger" costs $99 per month.

Yet it was briefly riding high with $80,000 (roughly £63,000/AU$106,000) per month in revenue according to Sensor Tower, so how did it succeed?

Later, I dug deeper to find that unfortunately, these aren't isolated incidents - they're fairly common in the app store's top grossing lists.

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For Apple, the tipping is not encouragement for content creators, rather the same as the purchase of game, music and video, which should be classified as in-app purchase, and Apple can take 30 percent as commission. So, if that is the case, how on earth did a fraudulent app like this make it into the App Store in the first place?

Apple has been notoriously opaque about its review process, which has been a source of frustration to many developers over the years.

For consumers, Lin suggests reviewing your subscriptions.

"And there is no excuse for Apple not having flagged them after the fact, once they started generating significant revenue".

To put an end to the app review prompts Apple have designed new rules regarding app review prompts and how frequently the developers are permitted to request them. You just need to head into Settings iTunes & App Store In-App Ratings & Reviews and slide the switch off.

Gruber argued that Apple needs to reassess "the effects of allowing developers to buy their way to the top spot in search results".



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