Wednesday, March 11, 2009

App store reviews now separated by version!

Since the last two posts were complaining (about apple) I'll restore some balance...

Apple really does seem to be listening to developer feedback. One of the annoying things for developers and reviews of their apps is that they are cumulative for all versions of the app, so if someone has a rough start, it's hard to shake the early reviews. Well, now in the reviews, they've added "Average for all versions" as well as (presumably) average for the current version! This will of course also mean that it works the other way, if for some reason your app blows up after the second update (after having lots of great feedback) then would-be buyers will also see that the the current version maybe isn't as good as it used to be. It doesn't go as far as letting developers actually RESPOND to the feedback, but it certainly is a step in the right direction. Here's a couple of images from my own app's page.

Also of note, it appears that they now show the total number of ratings, not just those with actual textual reviews. Though I still think they should separate the non-text reviews from the averages since they are highly biased downward by asking for a rating when an app is deleted :(

Note, I haven't yet upgraded to iTunes 8.1 yet so this is a feature for everyone, not just the newly upgraded.

I hope they also made the dang thing load a bit faster (and cache old pages a bit less) but I won't hold my breath since those are typically mutually exclusive demands.

Oooh, it also has a last modified date by all the reviews, I like it!

One more request (since I'm pretty sure steve jobs read this blog): LET DEVELOPERS SEE THE INTERNATIONAL REVIEWS FOR THEIR APP please, instead of having to resort to some crazy screenscraping hack which is undoubtably slowing the store down for everyone else...

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