Apple Blocks Custom Review Prompts 

20 Jun 2017

As we warned about a few months back, Apple is now requiring apps to use the Apple-provided API to ask users for reviews and anything else will be rejected.

From section 1.1.7 of the updated App Store Review Guidelines.

Use the provided API to prompt users to review your app; this functionality allows customers to provide an App Store rating and review without the inconvenience of leaving your app, and we will disallow custom review prompts.

If you’re using a custom review prompt in your app, expect to get flagged for this soon and make arrangements to use Apple’s official API going forward.

How to use App Store Phased Releases

15 Jun 2017

UPDATED Phased Releases is now supported on all Apple platforms and we’ve updated this guide accordingly.

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The All-New App Store 

07 Jun 2017

A preview from Apple of the App Store redesign coming this fall in iOS 11.

This is a big and welcome change for the App Store. Expect more posts from us on new opportunities with this redesign over the summer.

3 Tips for Improving an App

30 May 2017

Your team has developed an app and it’s on the App Store and Google Play among others. What to do now?

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TestFlight Updates 

11 Apr 2017

Apple shipped some great updates to TestFlight and iTunes Connect today.

The testing interface within iTunes Connect is much improved with a better layout that brings more clarity to who’s testing what. Other highlights include:

  • TestFlight builds expire after 90 days instead of 60 days now.
  • “Internal Testers” is now “iTunes Connect Users” which makes much more sense.
  • “External Testers” is now entirely group-based. Apple has automatically placed your existing External Testers into an “External Testers” group which you’re free to modify as you see fit.
  • Testers can now choose from multiple builds to install. This is great for testing an upgrade or comparing changes between versions. Previously you could only test one build at a time and going back to an earlier version was impossible.
  • Each group can test different builds now. For example, you can have “Employee” and “Customer” groups so your team can test the latest greatest build while your customers test a production-ready version.
  • When a build goes live on the App Store, your testers can continue using the TestFlight version. In the past TestFlight builds were deactivated once the App Store version went live.

iOS 10.3 Ships In-App Ratings & Developer Responses 

28 Mar 2017

Apple released iOS 10.3 on Monday and with it comes some much needed changes to ratings and reviews on the App Store.

The new StoreKit API available on iOS 10.3 makes it easy for customers to provide App Store ratings and reviews without leaving your app.

Apple has intimated that this new API will eventually become the only approved way to solicit ratings from users. If your app uses an existing rating-prompt solution, it will need to be replaced with this new API eventually. Our bet is Apple will start enforcing this policy later this year.

Also with these changes comes the ability for publishers to publicly respond to reviews on the App Store.

When you respond, the customer is notified and has the option to update their feedback.

Negative reviews are never a good thing but publicly acknowledging a customer’s feedback can make it a positive experience for both parties. We recommend you start monitoring and responding to reviews today, Apple has more info on the rating system here.

App Store Holiday Shutdown 

01 Dec 2016

iTunes Connect will effectively be closed over the Christmas holiday so get your app updates in soon. There’s typically an increase in App Store review time as everyone gets their updates submitted so earlier is always better.

New apps and app updates will not be accepted December 23 to 27 (Pacific Time), so any releases should be submitted, approved, and scheduled in advance.

Apple Pay for Donations 

15 Nov 2016

U.S.-based nonprofits can now use Apple Pay to accept donations within an app or on the web. Previously, donations could only be accepted via cumbersome methods like SMS or an externally linked web page so Apple Pay is huge improvement here.

Install Apple TV Apps Remotely 

10 Nov 2016

From Apple:

Customers who have enabled their Apple TV to automatically install apps can download your app straight to Apple TV from their iOS device or computer.

One of the largest challenges with tvOS is the discoverability of apps on the Apple TV’s App Store. The majority of customers are simply not going to sit on their couch and browse like they would on mobile.

Apple’s latest development aims to fix this. Now, customers can find your app on the internet and click a button to install it on their Apple TV remotely.

In-App Purchase Promo Codes 

31 Oct 2016

Finally promo codes can be generated for your iOS app’s in-app purchases. This also applies to subscriptions BUT there’s a few caveats:

  1. Redeemed subscriptions won’t automatically renew.
  2. Redeemed subscriptions don’t apply to the one year requirement for a payout increase to 85%.

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