Items tagged with App Store

Are Apple’s app practices anti-competitive? Phillip Shoemaker, the former head of App Store approvals, is concerned about the current competition between Apple and other developers. He argued that Apple should update its guidelines to give users a better experience, but noted that the app review process is rather complicated.  Shoemaker was the head of App Store approvals between 2009 and 2016, and he helped to craft Apple’s in-app purchase system. In 2009, his team decided that Apple would receive a 30% cut of every digital good or service sold within an iOS app. Furthermore, apps were not allowed to include buttons or links that would direct customers to other places where... Read more...
Will Kyrie Irving re-sign with the Boston Celtics? Is there a chance Rob Gronkowski comes out of retirement and helps the New England Patriots win another Super Bowl? Will Valve's Steam Link app return to Apple's App Store? Those are all pressing questions, especially for any geek who might reside or have been raised in the Boston area, and the answer to at least one of them is a resounding Yes! I am, of course, referring to the Steam Link app, though I'd be tickled pink if all three came to fruition. As it pertains to the Steam Link app, Valve initially released an official version for iOS devices last year, only for Apple to block it due to "business conflicts with app guidelines." Valve appealed... Read more...
The Apple App Store is regarded as being more a lot more secure than Google Play, but it's not perfect. An app was discovered last month that had bypassed Apple's security and was spying on users. Now, cybersecurity experts are worried that more unsecure apps might be sold to Apple customers after a Supreme Court ruling this week that will allow iPhone users to proceed with a class-action suit against Apple. The class-action alleges Apple's monopoly on the downloading of apps from the App Store drove prices up. While the Supreme Court approved the suit, the actual suit does have to go back and work its way through the lower courts. The case has the potential to force Apple to open its walled... Read more...
Malware is rampant on the Google Play store and is something that Google is trying to get a handle on. Apple has much less of an issue with malware on its App Store because it forces a review process for every app that wants to be distributed on the app store. That doesn't mean that malware and nefarious apps can't make their way through. Mobile security firm Lookout says that a developer has been able to abuse Apple-issued security certificates to bypass the App Store and target Apple devices. The app hid as a carrier assistance app, and once it was installed, it has wide-ranging permissions that allow it to silently capture the compromised device contacts, audio recordings, photos, videos,... Read more...
Security firm Kaspersky Lab has filed an antitrust complaint against Apple in Russia over recent restrictions placed on the company's Kaspersky Safe Kids app for iOS. According to Kaspersky, Apple only decided to place additional restrictions on the app after announcing its own Screen Time feature as part of iOS 12, essentially putting it in competition with third-party parental control software. In a blog post on the subject, Kaspersky Lab says Apple had no issue with its app for the past three years. Now, however, Apple has blocked the app because it does not meet the requirements of paragraph 2.5.1 of the guidelines for apps hosted in the App Store. "It turned out that, according to Apple,... Read more...
Following an antitrust complaint filed by Spotify with the European Commission, Apple has issued a lengthy statement defending its App Store policies, and refuting Spotify's claims that it is being treated unfairly. The statement also insinuates that Spotify has become a leech, saying the App Store helped the streaming music service "dramatically grow" its business and now it wants to "keep all of the benefits of the App Store ... without making any contributions." Spotify filed its complaint earlier this week, accusing Apple of not playing fair by charging a 30 percent "tax" on purchases made in the App Store, including when customers upgrade from its free, ad-supported tier to one of its paid... Read more...
If you ever pay full price for App Store/iTunes credit, you are doing it wrong. The time to pounce is when gift cards and credit purchases go on sale, as typically occurs around various holidays and random times of the year. Such is the case right now—in an email to App Store and iTunes users, Apple is alerting users that they can get a 10 percent bonus when loading up their Apple ID accounts. This is a little different than a typical gift card purchase. What you are doing is adding funds to your Apple ID account from a credit or debit card, which you can then use to make purchases in the App Store, on iTunes, and via iCloud. "Now you can load money to your account more conveniently than... Read more...
Christmas has come and gone, but there's a good chance that many Americans received some form of Amazon Echo device under the tree. With so many new Echo owners joining the fray for the first time, they are inevitably heading to the iOS App Store to download the companion app so that they can get started with the setup process on their iPhone. However, an unofficial app has somehow made it near the top of the charts in the App Store, and it is by no means harmless. The app is called "Setup for Amazon Alexa" and was first spotted by 9to5Mac earlier this morning. As of this writing, the app is still available as a free download and is currently trending at #6 under the Utilities section... Read more...
Apple is about to have its day in court; but we're not talking about a federal circuit court due to its long-standing battle with Qualcomm. Instead, Apple is set to appear before the U.S. Supreme Court over antitrust allegations stemming from its popular App Store. If regular consumers want to install software on their iPhones or iPads (without jailbreaking, of course), the only way that this is permitted is via Apple’s App Store. This is Apple's curated walled garden for apps and games, and is strictly controlled. Developers must submit their apps to Apple for approval, and if they meet all of the company’s criteria (and are malware-free), they can be listed either as a free, freemium,... Read more...
If you're a developer thinking of a way to slip a cryptocurrency mining app into the iOS App Store to make a quick buck, Apple is putting stop to that. The company has updated its developer guideline to explicitly ban cryptocurrency mining on the iPhone and the iPad. The updated rules can be found in Apple's App Store Review Guidelines under the "Hardware Compatibility" heading. Apple clearly states that power efficiency should be a clear goal for developers, given the battery constraints of a portable device like an iPad or iPhone (but especially the iPhone). "Apps should not rapidly drain battery, generate excessive heat, or put unnecessary strain on device resources," writes Apple.... Read more...
Apple has revised its App Store rules and policies with slightly looser restrictions that could pave the way for Valve's Steam Link streaming app to take residence on iOS devices, after it was previously blocked. The relevant wording in the revised rules has to do with how remote mirroring apps like the Steam Link are handled. Depending on Apple's reviews process going forward, the change means that Valve's app could end up on iPhone and iPad devices, after all. First, a little background on the topic. Last month, Valve launched its Steam Link app in beta for Android devices. It works similar to the hardware version of Steam Link, only instead of beaming games in a user's Steam library to a television... Read more...
Valve launched the Steam Link app in beta on Google Play earlier this month and planned to bring the app to iOS as well. Initially, Apple approved the app for launch only to turn around a couple days later and pull that approval leaving Valve with no way to get the app onto iOS. At the time the denial was issued, all Apple said was that the Steam Link app violated App Store terms. Valve had said that it hoped Apple would reconsider. It appears that Apple is reconsidering with Phil Schiller having sent out emails to some Apple users who cried foul over the Steam Link app rejection. Reports indicate that the same email was received by multiple people indicating it is a canned response. In... Read more...
Technology companies that collect any sort of data are scrambling to be sure that they are being as careful in the wake of Facebook's Cambridge Analytica privacy problems. The latest tech firm to take a hard look at user privacy is Apple, with reports that it is cracking down on apps that share location data with third-party companies. Apple has begun removing the apps in question from the App Store if it finds that data is being shared and notifying the developers of the app that they have violated two different listing guidelines (sections are 5.1.1 and 5.1.2 of the App Store Review Guidelines). Those guidelines have to do with transmitting user location data and user awareness of data collection.... Read more...
Last Friday mobile gamers got a surprise when PUBG Mobile launched in Canada. At the time the game launched in The Great White North, the only way for U.S. gamers to partake in the fun was to change their region and download the game. PUBG Mobile has now officially landed in the U.S. and the game is available on both Android and iOS platforms. The game is said to be an accurate and faithful reproduction of gameplay currently available on PC and console systems, and promises high-quality graphics thanks to Unreal Engine 4 along with HD audio. Perhaps the best news about PUBG Mobile is that the game is free, whereas it costs money to play on PC or console systems. If you have never played... Read more...
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