App Store


'App Store' Articles Page 2

Apple Store App Updated With iOS 11 Enhancements and Support for iPhone Purchases Without Carrier Pre-Activation

Apple today updated its Apple Store app to version 4.4, introducing iOS 11 enhancements and a new scanner feature for quickly adding your credit card information at checkout. According to the release notes, the app update also allows customers to bypass pre-authorization and activate later on full price purchases of iPhones, a purchasing option that has been available for the iPhone X on the Apple Store website since November.What's New in Version 4.4 - iOS 11 enhancements - Scanner now available to easily add your credit card information at checkout - Customers now have the option to bypass pre-authorization and activate later on full price purchases of iPhones on AT&T, Verizon, or SprintThe Apple Store app is Apple's iOS storefront, allowing customers to find and purchase a range of Apple products and accessories. It can be downloaded from the App Store for free. [Direct Link]

Apple Support App Updated With Redesigned Interface and New Discover Section

Apple today updated its official Apple Support app to introduce an overhauled interface and a new "Discover" tab for learning about new features in the products you own. The new Apple Support interface features a cleaner look with more white space and a universal search bar at the top of the "Get Support" section for locating articles more quickly. When selecting a product to get help, the app is better organized into different topics, with support articles separated into "Popular Topics" and "More Topics." More recommended articles are also offered up during the support process, making it simpler to find help. A new navigation bar at the bottom of the app is separated into "Discover," "Get Support," and "Account." Aside from Discover, these features were previously available, but were organized differently. The new Discover tab is the biggest addition to the Support app. It's designed to surface tutorial articles that are specific to the device you own. On an iPhone 7 Plus, for example, the Discover section offers up articles like using the Files app, capturing Live Photos, and using Messages. There's also a "Collections" feature that has sections like Welcome to iOS 11, Get to know your iPhone, Get the most from your iPad Pro, Apple Watch Workout, and more. The new Support app is available starting today, with the update available in the iOS App Store for free. [Direct Link]

Apple Pulls App Store Games That Glorify Philippine President Duterte's Violent Drugs War

Apple has taken down games from its App Store that glorify the Philippine government's deadly drugs war, according to a regional organization supporting victims of illegal drugs (via The Philippine Star). Last month, the Asian Network of People who Use Drugs (ANPUD) sent Apple CEO Tim Cook a letter demanding that the company remove several iOS games which it said valorized "the emerging tyranny of Duterte's presidency and his government's disregard for human rights principles". Tsip Bato by Ranida Games The group named 131 organizations from several countries as supportive of the letter of complaint, with groups working on human rights, youth and drug policy reform among them. In a statement posted on its website yesterday, ANPUD said that it never received a direct response from Cook, but the runner games that its letter accused of promoting murder, extrajudicial killings and violence appeared to have been removed as of Tuesday. They include Duterte knows Kung Fu: Pinoy Crime Fighter, Duterte Running Man Challenge Game, Fighting Crime 2, and Tsip Bato: Ang Bumangga Giba!, all of which featured Duterte or Philippine National Police chief (Ronald) Bato dela Rosa shooting down criminals while evading obstacles. Despite their removal from Apple's App Store, the games remain available for Android users to download from the Google Play store. Police chief Ronald dela Rosa told the Philippine Star that the removal of the games was a good idea, and that the government's operation to tackle drug users was not about killing or the use of violence. His comments

Apple to Shut Down iTunes Connect From December 23 to 27

Each year, Apple shuts down iTunes Connect for a week around the holidays to give its App Store staff time off from work. This year, iTunes Connect will be shut down from December 23 to December 27. While iTunes Connect is shuttered, Apple will not accept new apps or app updates, so all price changes and app submissions will need to be locked in before that date. Developers often offer sales and promotions ahead of when the App Store closes for the holidays, and those sales remain available until the App Store re-opens in late December. Apple says developers can let customers know about promotions, upcoming features, and in-app events using the promotional text field available in iOS 11. While app store submissions will be unavailable, other iTunes Connect tools will remain accessible to developers throughout the holiday

Apple Has Removed Skype From App Store in China to Comply With Local Law

Microsoft has confirmed that Skype has been "temporarily removed" from the App Store on iPhone and iPad, according to a statement given to The New York Times. Apple told The New York Times that it was forced to remove a number of voice and video calling apps from the App Store in China to comply with laws in the country.We have been notified by the Ministry of Public Security that a number of voice over internet protocol apps do not comply with local law. Therefore these apps have been removed from the app store in China. These apps remain available in all other markets where they do business.Skype has been unavailable on the App Store since at least late October, according to users on Twitter and other websites. The service appears to function normally still for users who have already installed the app. Skype is the latest victim of China's strict internet filters, colloquially known as the Great Firewall. Earlier this year, Apple was forced to remove many VPN apps from the App Store in China due to regulations, while other apps affected in the past or present include WhatsApp, Facebook, Snapchat, and Twitter. Microsoft wouldn't comment on why Skype is also unavailable on at least a few major third-party Android app stores. Many of Google's services, including Gmail and YouTube, have been blocked in China for several years. Note: Due to the political nature of the discussion regarding this topic, the discussion thread is located in our Politics, Religion, Social Issues forum. All forum members and site visitors are welcome to read and follow the thread, but

Apple Launches New 'This Weekend Only' App Store Deals Feature

As part of its newly updated App Store in iOS 11, Apple is introducing a new "This Weekend Only" feature for the "Today" section, which will see the company offering "new ways to save" with apps. Apple will introduce an app with a special deal each Thursday, with discounts available through Sunday. To celebrate the launch of the feature, Apple this week is offering exclusive discounts within five apps. You can find the discounts by opening the App Store on an iOS device and navigating to the "Today" view. It's listed under "Introducing: This Weekend Only." This weeks deals are listed below. - HotelTonight: With the HotelTonight discount, customers booking a last minute hotel room can receive up to 40 percent off of the original room price. - Glasses by Warby Parker: With Warby Parker's new app, customers who place an order for glasses or sunglasses this weekend will receive a free geometric case, valued at $15. - Under Armour: Purchases over $100 made within athletic apparel app Under Armour will be discounted by $20. - Chipotle: When purchasing an entree at Chipotle, customers can get a free order of chips and queso. - Shoptiques: Apparel and accessory app Shoptiques is providing 15 percent off all orders over $100. Apple's new "This Weekend Only" App Store section is just one of the ways the company is using the new design of the App Store to highlight apps. Each day, there's an array of new content available in the Today section of the App Store, which is designed to surface a range of new apps and

Free-to-Play Strategy Game 'South Park: Phone Destroyer' Arrives on the iOS App Store

Following an announcement earlier this year during E3, South Park: Phone Destroyer is launching today on iOS and Android devices. The game was developed by Ubisoft studio RedLynx in collaboration with South Park Digital Studios, and combines real-time strategy and collectible card mechanics with the world of South Park. Similar to the console games South Park: The Stick of Truth and South Park: The Fractured But Whole, players will take on the role of the New Kid in the midst of turmoil rising in the town of South Park. However, in the mobile game users have to collect, upgrade, and master card decks of iconic characters, which are then used in the game's combat. There are more than 80 unique cards to discover across Phone Destroyer's single-player campaign, which includes 60 levels. There's also a real-time, player versus player multiplayer mode with leaderboards and special character unlocks. Although the game is free-to-play, the developers clarified on the website that it "avoids the pitfalls" of traditional F2P apps: The game is free to play. Everything can be earned in the game without paying, but you can choose to spend real world money if you wish. The game is designed so that nothing is ever locked behind a paywall. Everything in the game is available to all players as they progress, whether they choose to spend real-world money or not. Remember, you can always disable in-app purchases in your iOS device settings. There will be ongoing updates coming to South Park: Phone Destroyer, including new characters, cards, and more. The game's audio is also true

Apple's Services Revenue Up 34% Year-Over-Year in 4Q 2017, Setting New All-Time Quarterly Record

Apple's services category, which includes the App Store, iTunes Store, Apple Music, Apple Pay, AppleCare, iCloud, licensing, and other services, set an all-time quarterly record revenue in the fourth fiscal quarter of 2017. During the quarter, the services category brought in $8.5 billion, up from $6.3 billion in the year-ago quarter for an impressive 34 percent growth. Apple's services category is the size of a Fortune 100 company, a milestone Apple hit earlier this year. Apple often attributes much of the growth of its services category to the App Store, and that continues to be the case this quarter. iOS 11 brought an entirely new App Store experience that splits Games and Apps into separate tabs and introduces a new "Today" section that allows Apple to better highlight the wide variety of apps that are available in the App Store, offering up a range of editorial picks to improve app discovery. Apple says the new design has increased customer visits, the number of apps downloaded, and the amount of time customers spend in the store. The iOS 11 update also introduced ARKit, making the iPhone and the iPad the largest augmented reality platform in the world. There are already more than 1,000 ARKit apps available for download from the App Store. Apple Music revenue also "grew strongly" during the quarter, with 75% growth in subscribers year-over-year, and iCloud also saw "double-digit growth" when it comes to monthly average users and revenue. Apple has 210 million paid subscriptions across all its services category, up 25 million in 4Q 2017 alone. Apple

Apple Encourages Developers to Update Their Apps for iPhone X

Apple this afternoon reminded developers about the imminent launch of the iPhone X and encouraged them to submit apps that are optimized for the new device. Developers can download Xcode 9.0.1 to test apps using the iPhone X simulator before submitting their updated apps to iTunes Connect.The future is almost here. iPhone X will be available November 3. This stunning device features the all-new Super Retina display for more immersive experiences and Face ID, a secure new way to unlock, authenticate, and pay. The TrueDepth camera works with ARKit, and the A11 Bionic chip is designed for Core ML and Metal 2. Download Xcode 9.0.1, test your apps in the iPhone X simulator, and capture screenshots. Then submit your updated apps and metadata in iTunes Connect today.There are specific Human Interface Guidelines developers are encouraged to follow when updating their apps for the iPhone X. Developers need to take into account the iPhone X's rounded corners, sensor "notch" at the top of the device, and the indicator area for accessing the Home screen to prevent clipping. Developers are discouraged from attempting to mask or call special attention to features like the rounded corners and the sensor housing at the top of the device. Apps that support Apple Pay or Touch ID will need to make sure Face ID, not Touch ID is referenced within apps on the iPhone X. Apps that use Touch ID will be able to incorporate Face ID as a replacement automatically. The iPhone X will be in the hands of customers starting on Friday, November 3, the official launch date for the device.

Apple's 'App of the Day' Feature Boosts Downloads Up to 2,172%

With the launch of iOS 11, Apple introduced an entirely revamped App Store that includes a "Today" feature for prominently featuring app content. "Today" includes both an "App of the Day" and a "Game of the Day" feature, with apps that are swapped out daily, and as it turns out, getting featured as an app or game of the day can result in a huge boost in downloads for developers. According to 30 days of data sourced by Apptopia (via TechCrunch), apps and games that are featured see a major surge in downloads. An app featured on a weekday could see a download boost of up to 2,172 percent. While games are often some of the most downloaded apps in the App Store, it's apps that see a bigger increase in downloads from being featured. Games, for example, see a maximum gain of 963 percent, and that's for a free game. On average, in total, games see a 792 percent boost from an App Store feature, while apps see a 1,747 percent boost. Free apps and games are of course more popular than paid apps and games, receiving much higher interest overall when featured. Weekday featuring also resulted in higher download gains than weekend featuring. To gather its data, Apptopia looked at apps and games that have been featured by Apple over the course of the last 30 days. 5 out of 30 apps of the day were paid apps and 11 of 30 games were paid games. Apps that are not as well established and well-known did better than apps that are already widely downloaded. As an example, Starbucks was featured and was downloaded only a "handful" of times more than the day before it was

U.S. Senators Ask Apple Why VPN Apps Were Removed From China App Store

Two U.S. senators have written to Apple CEO Tim Cook asking why the company removed third-party VPN apps from its App Store in China (via CNBC). Reports that Apple had pulled the VPN apps first arrived in July, following regulations passed earlier in the year that require such apps to be authorized by the Chinese government. In the open letter dated October 17, Senators Patrick Leahy and Ted Cruz write that China has an "abysmal" human rights record when it comes to freedom of expression and free access to online and offline information, and say they are "concerned that Apple may be enabling the Chinese government's censorship and surveillance of the internet". Senators Ted Cruz (R-Texas, left) and Patrick Leahy (D-Vermont) "While Apple's many contributions to the global exchange of information are admirable, removing VPN apps that allow individuals in China to evade the Great Firewall and access the internet privately does not enable people in China to 'speak up'." "To the contrary, if Apple complies with such demands from the Chinese government it inhibits free expression for users across China, particularly in light of the Cyberspace Administration of China's new regulations targeting online anonymity."The senators go on to note that Cook was awarded the free speech award at Newseum's 2017 Free Expression Awards, where he said: "First we defend, we work to defend these freedoms by enabling people around the world to speak up. And second, we do it by speaking up ourselves." In the bipartisan request, the senators then ask Cook to explain Apple's actions by

Activists Urge Apple to Remove App Store Games That Play Up Philippine Drugs War

A group of civil society organizations has demanded that Apple remove games from its App Store that promote violence and killings commonplace in the Philippines' war on drugs (via Reuters). The games in question, which the group said violated Apple's own guidelines, include characters based on Philippines President Rodrigo Duterte and his national police chief, Ronaldo "Bato" dela Rosa, who engage criminals in gun battles and fistfights. Tsip Bato by Ranida Games "These games valorise and normalise the emerging tyranny of Duterte's presidency and his government's disregard for human rights principles," the Asian Network of People who Use Drugs (ANPUD) said in an open letter to Apple CEO Tim Cook.The group named 131 organizations from several countries as supportive of the October 10 complaint to Apple, with groups working on human rights, youth and drug policy reform among them. They urged the tech giant to issue an apology for hosting such "insensitive content". Apple has yet to respond to the letter. Thousands have been killed in Duterte's war on drugs, a 15-month-long campaign that has caused international alarm. Human rights groups say state-sponsored executions are taking place, but authorities vehemently reject the claim. Games available in the App Store that have come in for criticism include Fighting Crime 2, Duterte Knows Kung Fu, Duterte Running Man Challenge, Tsip Bato, and Duterte Vs Zombies. The civil rights groups said the games "might seem harmless and fun" but are offensive and distasteful because of the reality and prevalence of

Apple to Remove Dice and Educational Games Subcategories, Catalogs Category From App Store

Apple today informed developers that as of now, the Dice subcategory in the Games section of iTunes Connect has been eliminated, with Apple planning to remove the Dice section from the App Store in the near future. Developers who have apps in the Dice subcategory have received the email. Apple says that developers don't need to take any action, but can change their app's subcategory if desired.Starting today, the Dice subcategory under Games will no longer be available for selection in iTunes Connect and will be removed from the App Store in the future. You are receiving this email because you have one or more apps in this subcategory. While no action is required since subcategory selection is optional, you can change your app's subcategory during your next update as described in View and edit app information, or change it now if your app has an editable app status.Apple did not explain why it has opted to remove the Dice category from the App Store, but it's likely not a highly popular category and its elimination allows for better streamlining of the available sections in the App Store. Lotto Machine has maintained #12 in the Dice category for quite a while ☹️ I guess now I'm a nothing in the games category instead pic.twitter.com/5WkfsWwaUV— Steve T-S (@stroughtonsmith) October 4, 2017 Dice games can be rolled into a wide range of other categories. Game categories in the revamped App Store in iOS 11 include Action, Adventure, AR, Arcade, Board, Card, Casino, Family, Indie, Kids, Music, Puzzle, Racing, Role Playing, Simulation, Sports, Strategy, Trivia, and

App Store Surfacing Old Reviews From as Early as 2008 for Some Users

Since at least the iOS 11 beta, the App Store has been prioritizing old reviews from several years ago for some users. Now that the software update is publicly released, we're starting to receive more user reports about the change. The first review for Facebook's app is from 2008 On my own iPhone, the first review for Facebook is from 2008, the year the App Store launched. The reviewer called it a nice app that allows him to stop using Facebook over text messaging, which is clearly a dated comment. Similarly, the first review I can see for the Skype app is seven years old. The reviewer said he was glad the app finally has the ability to make phone calls over a 3G network, a feature added way back in May 2010. Old reviews appeared at or near the top of the list for several regularly updated apps in my testing, including Airbnb, Dropbox, Google Maps, Instagram, Minecraft, Netflix, Twitter, Waze, WhatsApp, Yelp, and YouTube. The top reviews for Google's app are six to nine years old It's worth noting that I live in Canada. A few MacRumors editors living in the United States checked the App Store and saw much newer reviews for the Facebook app, although they were shown a three-year-old review for the Google app. A handful of MacRumors forum members living in the United States report seeing very old reviews, however, so there doesn't appear to be any consistency to this change. Your mileage may vary completely. "Now I have to wade through 6-yr-old app reviews, which are worthless," said MacRumors forum member AllergyDoc, whose location is listed as Utah.

Myst-Like Puzzle Game 'The Witness' Now Available From the App Store

Popular PC and console game The Witness finally made its way to the iPhone and iPad tonight with the official release of the iOS version of the game. If you're not familiar with The Witness, it's a 3D Myst-like puzzle adventure game designed by Jonathan Blow, the developer behind popular game Braid. In The Witness, players take on the role of a mystery person who wakes up alone on an island full of puzzles that need to be solved. The idea is to explore the island (which is open world), finish puzzles, and discover your identity. There are more than 500 puzzles to solve and dozens of locations to explore on the island. The game, which took seven years to complete, has been well-received on other platforms both for the gameplay balance and art style. Our sister site TouchArcade has been eagerly awaiting the launch of The Witness since 2011, when we heard the first hints that the game might eventually be released on iOS devices. TouchArcade has followed its progress since then, and shared the news of its launch tonight. The Witness is priced at $9.99 in the App Store, which is cheaper than the price from Steam or on consoles. In the Mac App Store, for example, it costs $39.99. The Witness is available now on iPad, iPhone, and iPod touch. [Direct Link]

Apple Shares Several New Videos Highlighting Revamped App Store in iOS 11

iOS 11 introduces an entirely revamped App Store that features a new "Today" screen for app discovery and separate sections for apps and games to make it easier to design content. It's a major change, and to highlight some of the new features, Apple today released a series of YouTube videos showing off the App Store. The first video is almost 40 seconds in length and focuses primarily on the Today section of the App Store with its app recommendations, developer stories, tips and tricks for using apps, and Game of the Day and App of the Day. Subsequent short videos are designed to show off some of the specific Today section features like the making of Monument Valley 2, the best apps for sneakerheads, and tips for karaoke-ing at home. Apple puts a lot of focus on the iOS App Store in iOS 11, especially with its move to eliminate the App Store from iTunes on the desktop. The iOS App Store is now the sole portal for discovering and managing app content on iOS devices. Apple updates the "Today" section of the App Store on a daily basis to introduce new content, and there continue to be detailed app and game recommendations in other sections of the App Store. To get the new App Store, iOS 11, released yesterday, is required. Update: It appears Apple has temporarily pulled these videos from its YouTube

Cellular Over-the-Air App Download Limit Increased to 150 MB

Following the launch of iOS 11, Apple today announced that it has increased the cellular over-the-air app download limit from 100 MB to 150 MB, meaning users can now download apps and app updates that are as large as 150 MB over a cellular connection. Apps and app updates over 150 MB will require users to connect to Wi-Fi for content to be downloaded. It's been awhile since Apple last updated the cellular download limit. The last increase was introduced in 2013, increasing the 50 MB limit to 100 MB. Apple has limits in place to avoid causing customers to unwittingly use high amounts of data when downloading apps, but the introduction of unlimited plans from all of the major carriers in the United States has likely alleviated some of those concerns. Developers often aim to keep their app sizes under the cellular limit whenever possible to prevent customers from having to hassle with connecting to Wi-Fi to download an app or app

PSA: Your Older 32-Bit Apps Won't Launch After Installing iOS 11

When millions of iPads and iPhones are updated to iOS 11 on September 19, older 32-bit apps that have not been updated with iOS 11 support will no longer launch. If you attempt to open one of these 32-bit apps, iOS 11 will refuse to open it and will offer up a message that says the app needs to be updated to work with the new operating system. You're also not going to find 32-bit apps available when searching in the new App Store, nor can previously downloaded 32-bit apps be installed through the Purchased tab. Apple has not widely publicized the imminent lack of support for 32-bit apps, so when older apps stop working tomorrow, it could come as a shock to the users who are still have them installed and use them regularly. Apple has, however, attempted to warn customers. Starting with the launch of iOS 10.1 in October of 2016, when launching a 32-bit app, Apple informed customers that older apps "may slow down your iPhone." As of iOS 10.3, a more explicit message has been provided: "This app will not work with future versions of iOS." Customers who have paid attention to these warnings may not be as surprised, but not everyone may have seen or read the warnings. Apple began transitioning to 64-bit apps when the iPhone 5s launched in September of 2013. All apps and app updates have been required to use 64-bit architecture since June of 2015, so all apps that are 32-bit have not been updated for at least two years. Many app developers have gone back and added 64-bit support to older apps, but there are still bound to be many apps that lack support.

New App Store Guidelines Officially Ban Virus Scanning Apps, Prevent Kids From Using Face ID

Apple this week updated its App Store Review Guidelines for developers, tweaking some existing rules and adding new rules that dictate what developers can and can't include in their apps. Most of the changes introduced are modest and reflect policies that Apple has already put in place, but there are some notable additions. Rule 2.3.1, which says developers should not include hidden or undocumented features in apps, has been updated with new language that expressly prevents developers from creating iOS-based virus and malware scanners.Similarly, you should not market your app on the App Store or offline as including content or services that it does not actually offer (e.g. iOS-based virus and malware scanners). Egregious or repeated behavior is grounds for removal from the Developer Program. We work hard to make the App Store a trustworthy ecosystem and expect our app developers to follow suit; if you're dishonest, we don't want to do business with you.Apple has been removing anti-virus and anti-malware apps from the App Store since 2015, in an effort to prevent customers from believing that it's possible for iOS devices to contract viruses and malware. Popular anti-virus app VirusBarrier, for example, was pulled from the App Store in March of 2015. Though there's been an unspoken ban on many of these apps, it's now official. Apple's new App Store rules also make it clear that children under 13 will not be permitted to use the Face ID facial scanning feature in the iPhone X. Rule 2.5.13 says apps using facial recognition for account authentication must offer an

32-Bit Apps Represented Less Than 1% of Apple's App Store Revenue Last Quarter

Apple began permitting developers to submit 64-bit applications to the iOS App Store back in 2013, allowing for improved app performance and reliability on 64-bit iOS devices. Then in June of 2015, Apple began enforcing that all apps and app updates released on the App Store must use the 64-bit architecture, meaning apps that are still 32-bit have not been updated in well over two years. With the upcoming launch of iOS 11, 32-bit apps won't be supported at all moving forward. Trying to open a 32-bit app on iOS 11 will present users with this message Recently, SensorTower decided to take a look at the remaining 32-bit apps on the App Store, which amounts to more than 180,000 worldwide. Looking at the last quarter, revenue from 32-bit apps amounted to "less than 1 percent" of Apple's total portion of App Store revenue. The older apps made approximately $37.5 million worldwide in the last quarter, and Apple's cut from that was about $11.3 million -- or "a mere 0.41 percent of its total revenue" from in-app purchases and paid apps on the App Store. While unsurprising, it's interesting to see the last few apps from the old era of the App Store clinging to life ahead of iOS 11. SensorTower pointed out that the two remaining highest-grossing 32-bit-only apps are "The Amazing Spider-Man" by Gameloft and "Trigger Fist" by Lake Effect, which in August made $45,000 and $36,000 worldwide, respectively. Without updates, these games and any like them will be defunct on any iPhone, iPad, or iPod touch running iOS 11, but Apple won't be losing much profit from the apps'