App Store

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The App Store is Apple's digital software distribution platform for iOS devices. First introduced in 2008, the App Store allows software developers to distribute content that has been created specifically for the iPad, iPhone, and iPod touch. Apps are also available on the Apple Watch through the iOS App Store.

There are well over a million apps in the App Store, and customers have downloaded more than 100 billion apps since the App Store debuted. App Store apps are available with three pricing options: free (and usually supported by ads), free with in-app purchases, or a set cost starting at $0.99 in the US.

In 2010, Apple introduced the Mac App Store for distributing content on Macs, and in 2015, Apple introduced the tvOS App Store, an app store for to the fourth-generation Apple TV.

'App Store' How Tos

How to Cancel App Store Subscriptions

Several TV and music services and other apps offer free trials through the App Store that automatically renew to become paid subscriptions after the trial period ends. If you want to prevent an App Store subscription from running beyond the trial period or cancel a subscription you're currently paying for, then read on. This article explains how to cancel any App Store subscription on iOS, Mac, and Apple TV.

'App Store' Articles

App Store Users Report Endless T&C Loop Preventing App Updates and Downloads

A number of iPhone and iPad users this morning are taking to Twitter and Reddit to report an issue with the App Store that prevents them from downloading or updating apps. The problem starts when a user taps the Get button on an app listing, whereupon a pop-up informs them that "Apple Media Services Terms and Conditions have changed" and that they must read and accept them to continue. Anyone facing this issue or is it only me ?Every time I click agree it pop up again & again! @Apple @AppStore @AppleSupport #Apple #IPhone #AppStore #AppleSupport #IOS12 pic.twitter.com/5RB7bhJtmx— sherif elseginy (@sherif_elsiginy) April 25, 2019 However, tapping OK and then agreeing to the terms and conditions simply sends the user back to the app's App Store listing where they're asked to read and accept the T&Cs again, thus begetting an endless loop. The T&C issue is being reported by users in different countries, and also appears to be affecting Apple's communication servers, with some users receiving multiple duplicate emails notifying them of a change in Apple Media Services terms. Yet Apple's System Status page is currently reporting no problems. One user reported that simply tapping Cancel when the T&C notification first pops up made it go away, allowing them to download or update the app in question, but this hasn't worked for others. Have you been affected by the T&C issue currently besetting the App Store? Let us know your experience the comments below. (Thanks, Mike!)

Apple Adds Extra Confirmation Step When Purchasing Subscriptions in Apps

Apple has introduced an extra confirmation step when App Store users purchase an app available on a subscription basis or tap to subscribe to a premium service in an app, making sure no accidental subscription purchases occur. The new subscription feature was highlighted on Twitter by developer David Barnard this afternoon and appears to have been implemented recently. With this new confirmation step, when you download an app with a subscription or tap on a subscription option in an app where the subscription feature is optional, you'll see a second subscription popup warning after initially confirming a purchase with Face ID or Touch ID on your iPhone or iPad. Whoa! Apple added an additional confirmation step for subscriptions. This new alert comes after you confirm with Touch ID/Face ID. I hope they address this in a more elegant way in iOS 13, but I’m thrilled Apple took a definitive step to curb scam subscriptions. 👏🏻 @pschiller pic.twitter.com/oktaEVdx0o— David Barnard (@drbarnard) April 11, 2019 The popup warns that the subscription will continue unless canceled in the Settings app at least one day before a subscription period ends, requiring users to confirm the notice with an OK button or tap cancel to cancel the initiation of the subscription. Adding a second confirmation screen to subscription purchases will thwart app developers who have been using nefarious tactics to trick users into purchasing subscriptions or making subscription costs and terms unclear. Accidental subscription purchases have been an ongoing problem with

Dutch Antitrust Watchdog to Investigate Whether Apple Gives Itself Preferential Treatment in App Store [Updated]

The Netherlands Authority for Consumers and Markets, or ACM for short, today announced that it will investigate whether Apple abuses its position in the App Store by, for example, giving preferential treatment to its own apps. ACM says the investigation will initially focus on Apple because the majority of anticompetitive allegations it has received from other companies and developers have been about the App Store. More specifically, the investigation will revolve around Dutch apps for "news media" available in the App Store. ACM board member Henk Don:To a large degree, app providers depend on Apple and Google for offering apps to users. In the market study, ACM has received indications from app providers, which seem to indicate that Apple abuses its position in the App Store. That is why ACM sees sufficient reason for launching a follow-up investigation, on the basis of competition law.However, the antitrust watchdog stresses that Apple is innocent unless proven guilty, and also encourages developers to come forward if they experience similar problems with Google's Play Store. ACM launched the investigation upon completion of its market study that explores the influence of app stores. For numerous apps, the watchdog found that no realistic alternatives to the App Store and Play Store exist, potentially giving Apple and Google the opportunity to set unfair conditions.On the one hand, Apple and Google have an interest in offering many different apps from app providers in their app stores. On the other hand,

Apple Announces 'Apple Arcade' Cross-Platform Subscription Games Service With Access to Over 100 Titles

Apple today announced Apple Arcade, a new subscription-based games service for mobile, desktop, and the living room, featuring hundreds of titles from top video game publishing houses including Disney, Sega, Lego, Cartoon Network, and Konami. A subscription to Apple Arcade includes access to over 100 new and exclusive games that can be played both online and offline across iPhone, iPad, Mac, and Apple TV, and the whole family can play using Family Sharing with one subscription fee. Apple Arcade will have a dedicated tab on the App Store, and games will be curated by Apple's team of App Store editors. Apple says the emphasis will be on personalized recommendations, and Apple promises that Apple Arcade games cannot collect any data about the user without consent. All Apple Arcade games will be all-you-can-play experiences, with all features, content, and updates included at no extra charge, and with no ads or in-app purchases necessary. "The App Store is the world's biggest and most successful game platform. Now we are going to take games even further with Apple Arcade, the first game subscription service for mobile, desktop and the living room," said Phil Schiller, Apple’s senior vice president of Worldwide Marketing. "We are working with some of the most innovative game developers in the world to create over 100 new and exclusive games to play across iPhone, iPad, Mac and Apple TV. Apple Arcade games will be great for families,

Apple Requiring New and Updated Apps to Support iPhone XS Max and 12.9-Inch iPad Pro Starting March 27

Apple today announced that all new and updated iPhone and iPad apps submitted to the App Store on and after March 27, 2019 must be built with the iOS 12.1 SDK or later and support the iPhone XS Max and/or the latest 12.9-inch iPad Pro. App Store screenshots for those devices will also be required. Likewise, all new apps and app updates for Apple Watch will need to be built with the watchOS 5.1 SDK or later and support the Apple Watch Series

Original iPhone Game 'Rolando' Returning to App Store

Back in 2008, we wrote about Rolando, a platform-style puzzle game that was one of the first games back when the iPhone and the App Store were both new. At the time, our sister site TouchArcade said it was among "the best games the App Store has to offer." The original Rolando game is no longer on the App Store because of the 2017 crackdown on 32-bit apps, but Rolando developer HandCircus today announced that a remastered version of the game is coming on April 3rd, which will be good news to fans of the Rolando series. Rolando: Royal Edition is an overhauled version of the original Rolando game from 2008, with updated graphics, redesigned levels, and new mechanics. HandCircus says that the entire game has been updated with new content. The award-winning iPhone classic is back and better than ever! This brand-new 'Royal Edition' is a completely remastered Rolando - every interaction, every course, flower, trampoline, bomb, catapult and squirrel has been given a thorough scrub, buff and shine, making this the most gorgeous version yet!In Rolando, the goal of the game is to guide a gang of Rolandos through traps and puzzles on a quest to save the sages from the Shadow Creatures. With the exception of new mechanics and updates to the design, the original Rolando gameplay appears to be intact. Rolando: Royal Edition can be pre-ordered from the App Store for $1.99, a 1/3 discount off of the planned launch price. [Direct Link]

Apple Offering 10% Bonus When Adding Funds to Your Account for App Store and iTunes Purchases

Apple today sent out emails letting App Store and iTunes users know about a new promotion that offers a 10 percent bonus when adding funds to an Apple ID account. When you add money directly to your Apple ID from a credit or debit card for making App Store, iTunes, and iCloud purchases, Apple is adding bonus credit. Apple says the offer is valid on amounts ranging from $1.00 to $200, so customers who add the maximum $200 in funds to their Apple IDs will receive a total of $220 with the bonus ($20 free). Funds can be added to your Apple ID account by opening up the Settings app, tapping on your account name, selecting the iTunes and App Store option, choosing your Apple ID, and then selecting "Add Funds to Apple ID." From there, you can see the promotional bonuses available and choose the amount of money you want to add to your account. You can also get to these options in the iTunes Store by tapping on your Apple ID or in the App Store by scrolling to the bottom (or tapping your profile picture) and selecting the Add Funds option. To use this feature, you will need to have a valid payment method added to your Apple ID account. The promotion will be available from March 10 through March 14 in the United States, and it is also available in other countries as well, such as Germany, where Apple is offering a 15 percent bonus. No bonus funds are available in the UK, Australia, or Canada, however.

Presidential Candidate Elizabeth Warren's Plan to 'Break Up' Big Tech Companies Could Affect Apple's App Store

Senator Elizabeth Warren, who is in the running for the 2020 presidential race as a Democratic candidate, today outlined her proposal for "breaking up" tech giants like Amazon, Google, and Facebook in an effort to combat monopolistic behavior (via CNBC). Apple is not directly mentioned in Warren's post on Medium, but a representative from her campaign confirmed the plan would affect Apple. Image via CNBC and Scott Olson/Getty Images In essence, Warren wants to make "big, structural changes" to the technology sector in order to promote increased competition. The presidential candidate says that these companies have too much power "over our economy, our society, and our democracy," in the process hurting small businesses and stifling innovation. To combat this, Warren proposes a path to restoring competition to the tech sector in two major steps. The first is by passing legislation that requires large tech platforms to be designated as "Platform Utilities" and broken apart from any participant on that platform. This first step is what would directly affect Apple, as the App Store would become a Platform Utility, and any of Apple's first-party apps on it would not be allowed. So, the company would have to choose between running the App Store or building and selling its own apps, according to Warren spokeswoman Saloni Sharma. The same law would hit Amazon on its Marketplace and Google's ad exchange. Second, the Warren administration would appoint regulators committed to reversing anti-competitive tech mergers. These include "unwinding" mergers like

Apple Cracking Down on Developers Spamming the App Store With Duplicate Apps

Just one day after exposing a handful of developers spamming the App Store with duplicate VoIP apps, a clear violation of the App Store Review Guidelines, TechCrunch reports that Apple has removed many of the apps from the App Store. However, the report notes that plenty of duplicate apps remain available in other categories, such as photo printing. MailPix Inc., for example, has released three different apps that all offer same-day photo printing at nearby CVS or Walgreens locations. All three apps appear to be virtually identical in functionality. By releasing duplicate apps on the App Store, developers are able to game the search results by using different names, categories, and keywords. As the report mentions, the primary issue here is that Apple is not consistently enforcing its App Store Review Guidelines, which warn developers that "spamming the store may lead to your removal from the Developer Program." This can lead to an unfair playing field for developers who do abide by the rules. With millions of apps on the App Store, it is likely that quite a few other duplicate apps have slipped through the cracks, but hopefully the increased awareness results in Apple cracking down more on these rule-breaking developers.

Apple Will Soon Let Developers Entice Past Subscribers With Discounted iOS, macOS, and tvOS Subscriptions

In an article posted to App Store Connect, Apple has detailed how iOS, macOS, and tvOS app developers will soon be able to offer discounted subscriptions to past subscribers in an attempt to win those customers back. As with introductory offers for new subscribers, there will be three categories of promotional offers for previous subscribers:Free Customers access your subscription for free for a specific duration — for example, a 30-day trial for a subscription with a standard renewal price of $4.99 per month. Pay As You Go Customers pay a promotional price for each billing period for a selected duration — for example, $1.99 per month for three months for a subscription with a standard renewal price of $9.99 per month. Pay Up Front Customers pay a one-time promotional price for a specific duration — for example, $9.99 for the first six months of a subscription with a standard renewal price of $39.99 per year.Developers will be able to offer up to 10 different promotions at once to test the waters. The promotional offers will also be available to existing subscribers, allowing developers to both retain and win back subscribers. A customer who has yet to subscribe to an app will not have access to the promotional offers, but may be presented with an introductory offer if the developer offers one. Using receipt validation, developers will be able to identify subscribers who have turned off auto-renewal so that they can act quickly with a promotional offer in an attempt to win them back before the end of their current subscription period. Once the

Apple Says European Developers Have Earned Over $25 Billion From App Store

Apple Music vice president Oliver Schusser spoke with German blog Macerkopf this week, revealing that European developers have now earned over $25 billion from the App Store since its inception in 2008. Schusser also noted that customers have downloaded and streamed over 50 billion episodes of 650,000 active shows on Apple Podcasts. Apple provided MacRumors with Schusser's full remarks in English:Our services division which includes the content stores, Apple Pay and iCloud storage is on target to be a $40 billion business annually. In January we announced developer earnings on the App Store have reached $120 billion. Payments to European developers have just passed $25 billion. Apple Music now has 50 million paid users around the world since launching just under 4 years ago. We're the the #1 music streaming service in the US and the leading music service globally on iPhone. Our customers love the amazing content, whether it's through playlists, Radio, Beats 1, or suggestions in For You. Apple Music was the first place to hear great new music from Nicki Minaj, The Weeknd and Frank Ocean to name a few last year. Beats 1 also hosts exclusive and popular artist-led shows from Drake, Nicki Minaj, Ezra Koenig, Lars Ulrich and Elton John. The final update I'd like to share today is around podcasting where our customers have downloaded and streamed over 50 billion episodes of 650,000 active shows on Apple Podcasts.Other figures mentioned in the remarks were previously known, including that developers have earned over $120 billion

Apple Plans to Let Developers Release Universal Apps That Work Across iPhone, iPad, and Mac by 2021, SDK Coming This June

Apple aims to allow developers to release universal apps that work across iPhone, iPad, and Mac by 2021, according to a new report today by Bloomberg's Mark Gurman. The ultimate goal of the multistep initiative, code-named "Marzipan," is by 2021 to help developers build an app once and have it work on the iPhone, iPad and Mac computers, said people familiar with the effort. That should spur the creation of new software, increasing the utility of the company’s gadgets.According to Gurman, Apple plans to let developers port iPad apps to Mac using a new software development kit that the company will release as early as June at WWDC. Apple previewed the apps plan, without disclosing the road map, at its developers conference last year. Apple typically previews the next major versions of its iOS and macOS operating systems at WWDC in June, with beta versions of each platform available to developers and public testers until September, so it stands to reason that an SDK for universal apps should begin rolling out in the pre-release software. Developers will still need to submit separate versions of the app to Apple's iOS and Mac App Stores, but the new kit will mean they don't have to write the underlying software code twice, said the people familiar with the plan. In 2020, Apple plans to expand the kit so iPhone applications can be converted into Mac apps in the same way.The "Marzipan" project is considered to be one of the biggest changes on Apple's roadmap, although Apple's plans are said to be "fluid" and could be altered, according to

Apple Introduces Quicker Way to Manage Subscriptions via App Store

Apple recently introduced an easier way to manage subscriptions via the App Store, as spotted by MacStories editor-in-chief Federico Viticci. Apple recently made a change (seems iOS 12.1.4 and 12.2 beta) to make it easier to manage subscriptions for iOS apps.Now you just need to open the App Store, tap your profile, and choose 'Manage Subscriptions'. pic.twitter.com/4PtxvAQjTm— Federico Viticci (@viticci) February 13, 2019 iPhone and iPad users running iOS 12.1.4 or iOS 12.2 beta can now simply open the App Store, tap on their profile picture in the top-right corner, and tap on Manage Subscriptions to view and edit App Store, Apple Music, and Apple News subscriptions. We've confirmed this Manage Subscriptions shortcut is not in earlier iOS versions. iOS 12.1.2 Managing subscriptions previously required an extra step of tapping on the box with your Apple ID name and email address via the App Store or Settings. Apple will reportedly host a subscription-focused media event on Monday, March 25 at Steve Jobs Theater, where it is expected to announce its widely rumored subscription news service and perhaps its streaming movie and TV show service.

Average U.S. iPhone User Spent $79 on Apps Last Year

iPhone users in the United States spent an average of $79 on App Store games and apps in 2018 according to an upcoming Sensor Tower report shared today by TechCrunch. At $79, the revenue generated per active U.S. iPhone grew 36 percent year over year, up from an average of $58 spent per iPhone in 2017. iPhone users spent about $21 more in 2018 on in-app purchases and paid downloads. Much of the spending growth came from mobile gaming, with 56 percent of the $79 total average attributed to App Store games. Spending was also up quite a lot in other categories such as entertainment, music, social networking, and health and fitness. Sensor Tower believes that subscription apps are a contributing factor for the increased spending in many of these non-faming categories. Apple's App Store is a major revenue driver for Apple in its services category, with app purchases continually setting new revenue records. The App Store hit a new single-day revenue record on New Year's Day, for example, with customers spending a whopping $322 million. Over the holiday period including Christmas and New Year's Day, the App Store raked in more than $1.22

Apple Forces Developers to Remove Screen Recording Code From iOS Apps [Update]

Yesterday, TechCrunch discovered that multiple popular iPhone apps from major companies are using intrusive analytics services that capture data ranging from taps and swipes to full screen recordings, all without customers knowing about it. Today, Apple has informed app developers that this kind of screen recording analytics code needs to be clearly disclosed to customers or removed from iOS apps. From an Apple spokesperson's email to TechCrunch:"Protecting user privacy is paramount in the Apple ecosystem. Our App Store Review Guidelines require that apps request explicit user consent and provide a clear visual indication when recording, logging, or otherwise making a record of user activity." "We have notified the developers that are in violation of these strict privacy terms and guidelines, and will take immediate action if necessary," the spokesperson added.At least one developer has already been told to remove the code that recorded app activities. From an email to the developer:"Your app uses analytics software to collect and send user or device data to a third party without the user's consent. Apps must request explicit user consent and provide a clear visual indication when recording, logging, or otherwise making a record of user activity."Apple is serious about getting rid of this code and gave the developer in question less than a day to remove it and resubmit the app before it would be pulled from the App Store. High-profile apps like Abercrombie & Fitch, Hotels.com, Air Canada, Hollister, Expedia, and Singapore Airlines are using

Some Popular iPhone Apps Secretly Record Your Screen for Analytics Purposes

Multiple popular iPhone apps from major companies are using intrusive analytics services that capture detailed data like taps, swipes, and even screen recordings without customer knowledge, reports TechCrunch. Apps that include Abercrombie & Fitch, Hotels.com, Air Canada, Hollister, Expedia, and Singapore Airlines are using Glassbox, a customer experience analytics firm that lets developers use "session replay" screen recording technology within their apps. Session replays let developers screenshot or record or a user's screen and then play back those recordings to see how users interact with their apps. Taps, button pushes, and keyboard entries are all captured and provided to app developers. Some apps, such as Air Canada, don't properly mask data that's recorded, exposing information like passport numbers and credit card information. Air Canada employees with access to the screenshot database can readily see this data. TechCrunch had mobile app expert The App Analyst look at some of the apps that Glassbox lists as a customer. Not all apps leaked masked data, and most appeared to be obfuscated, but there were instances where email addresses and postal codes were visible. "Since this data is often sent back to Glassbox servers I wouldn't be shocked if they have already had instances of them capturing sensitive banking information and passwords," The App Analyst told TechCrunch. As TechCrunch points out, all of the apps have a privacy policy, but not one makes it clear that they're recording a user's screen. Glassbox does not require special permission

App Developers Have Earned $120 Billion Since App Store Launched in 2008

App Store developers have earned a total of $120 billion since the App Store launched back in 2008, Apple announced today. More than a quarter of that total was earned in the past year alone, according to Apple. The App Store has seen significant growth in revenue with each quarter and it brings in a major part of Apple's growing services revenue. The new App Store metric was highlighted as part of an Apple Newsroom article covering the launch of the Entrepreneur Camp, which allows female-founded app development companies to attend a program at the Apple Park campus in Cupertino. Entrepreneur Camp is designed to provide female app creators with "the tools needed to thrive in today's global app economy." There are 11 female app founders who are joining the inaugural program, which will last for two weeks. Each attendee will have access to an immersive hands-on technology lab where participants will be able to work one-on-one with Apple experts and engineers to accelerate their apps. "In the past, starting a small business often meant having to invest in overhead, inventory or retail space. Today, a world of opportunity opens up with some coding skills and an entrepreneurial spirit," said Esther Hare, Apple's senior director, Worldwide Developer Marketing and executive sponsor, Women@Apple. "The App Store is the new digital Main Street, and creative developers are tapping into the vast potential of the global app economy. We hope that this program helps to inspire women around the world to learn to

Apple Reportedly Considering Gaming Subscription Service

Apple has held discussions with developers about a potential gaming subscription service, according to Cheddar's Alex Heath. The report, citing five unnamed sources, claims the service would function like "Netflix for games," providing paying subscribers with access to a bundle of games for a set price. Apple began privately discussing the service with game developers in the second half of 2018, according to the report. It's unclear how much the subscription will cost, when it may launch, or what kind of games Apple will offer. Apple has App Stores full of games on the iPhone, iPad, and iPod touch, Mac, and Apple TV, but many are free-to-download "freemium" titles supported by in-app purchases like coins and jewels. The service, said to be in the early stages of development, could bring more visibility to paid titles like Alto's Odyssey and Monument Valley rather than freemium titles like Clash of Clans that dominate the App Store charts. Given how early it is, though, Apple could ultimately abandon the plans. Apple has also discussed partnering with developers as a publisher, according to two of the sources cited, suggesting that the iPhone maker could handle marketing, distribution, and other related costs for select games. Possibly of note, Apple recently expanded its iPod touch trademark to encompass gaming in the United States. While sales of the device have faded in recent years, rumors suggest Apple may be planning a seventh-generation iPod touch, which would likely be one of the cheapest points of entry for an Apple gaming service. Apple is also

Westworld Mobile Game Removed From iOS App Store Following Bethesda Dispute

Warner Bros' Westworld mobile game, which bore a notable resemblance to Bethesda Softworks' Fallout Shelter game for smartphones, has been removed from the iOS App Store and Google Play Store. The removal comes seven months after Bethesda sued Warner Bros by calling the Westworld app a "blatant rip-off" of Bethesda's 2015 game Fallout Shelter. Westworld on iOS The lawsuit centered around Behaviour Interactive, the game developer that worked on both Fallout Shelter and Westworld, and who Bethesda accused of breach of contract, copyright infringement, unfair competition, and misappropriation of trade secrets. The dispute continued into the year, and in early January 2019 the companies released a simple one-line statement that said both parties "have amicably resolved" the lawsuit. After all of this, the @WestworldMobile Twitter account this week released its own statement, noting that the game has been removed from the iOS App Store and Google Play Store as of January 15, 2019. This means players can no longer make in-app purchases. On April 16, 2019, the app will officially close and no longer be supported by the developers. The developers warn players to spend any in-game currency before that date. via @WestworldMobile In the original lawsuit, Bethesda requested the Westworld mobile game to be removed from distribution, so it appears that part of the amicable resolution to the case was the official discontinuation of Westworld on iOS and Android. Users on Twitter asked about potential refunds for the in-app purchases they've already made in the

App Store Hits New Single-Day Revenue Record on New Year's Day With Customers Spending $322 Million

Following the news that iPhone sales were down during the month of December leading Apple to cut its guidance for Q1 2019, the company is aiming to soften the blow with some positive news. Apple today announced that App Store customers set new worldwide spending records over the holidays, with App Store purchases hitting $1.22 billion between Christmas Eve and New Year's Eve. On New Year's Day specifically, customers spent over $322 million on App Store purchases, setting a new single-day record."The App Store had a record-breaking holiday week and New Year's Day. The holiday week was our biggest week ever with more than $1.22 billion spent on apps and games, and New Year's Day set a new single-day record at more than $322 million," said Phil Schiller, Apple's senior vice president of Worldwide Marketing. "Thanks to the inspiring work of our talented developers and the support of our incredible customers around the world, the App Store finished off an outstanding 2018 and kicked off 2019 with a bang."Gaming and self-care were the most popular app downloads and purchases during the holidays. Fortnite and PUBG were some of the most downloaded games over the holiday period, along with Brawl Stars, Asphalt 9, and Monster Strike. According to Apple, the App Store drove its services category revenue to a new all-time record during the holiday quarter, with multiple Apple services that include the App Store, Apple Music, Cloud Services, Apple Pay and the App Store's search ad business setting new records. With Apple selling fewer iPhones, the company is hoping