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Inside iOS 7: Apple's new App Store simplifies app updating & discovery

post #1 of 25
Thread Starter 
The daily routine of manually installing application updates will become a thing of the past, while discovering new software will get easier, thanks to the enhanced capabilities of Apple's App Store in iOS 7.

App Store


Users annoyed by the seemingly omnipresent red update badge on the App Store icon will particularly appreciate iOS 7 when it debuts this fall. The App Store will automatically check for an install updates in the background, if the feature is enabled.

Recently updated applications can still be found in the "Updates" tab inside the App Store. Here, users can see when the update was installed and what changes the new software includes. From here, updates can also be manually installed, if the App Store has not yet automatically done so.

The Updates tab also includes a link to purchased content, allowing users to re-download applications they previously installed on one of their iOS devices.

Users can control the new auto-update functionality in the "iTunes & App Stores" section of the iOS Settings application. There, Updates, Apps and Music can all be enabled or disabled under the "Automatic Downloads" section. As in earlier iOS builds, users can also decide whether auto-downloads are allowed to use cellular data.

Further changes have been made to the App Store in iOS 7 to enhance application discovery. Replacing the "Genius" tab is a new feature called "Near Me," showcasing applications that are popular based on a user's current location. As expected, this activates iOS Location Services, as evidenced by the icon that appears in the taskbar.

App Store


Another new feature in the App Store is a built-in "Wish List." When browsing a paid application, the share button in the upper right corner includes the new "Add to Wish List" capability.

When browsing featured apps or the top charts, a Wish List button permanently resides in the top right corner, allowing users to quickly view their personal list. Unsurprisingly, only paid applications can be added to the App Store Wish List.

In another boost for discoverability, Apple has also promised that a new "Kids" category will come to the App Store in iOS 7. In the first beta provided to developers for testing, the "Kids" parent category is not yet available, though there is a dedicated "Kids" section within the "Games" category.

Apple has also tweaked the look of the App Store Top Charts once again, going back to a vertically scrolling list of applications. In changes made last year, the Top Charts were changed to instead scrolled from left to right.

App Store


For more on Apple's upcoming mobile operating system update, see the other parts of AppleInsider's ongoing Inside iOS 7 series. The other parts can be found below:

Apple puts Pandora on notice with iTunes Radio

Apple automates picture organization in new Photos app

Siri gets smarter with new system controls

Readers can also get all the latest updates from AppleInsider by installing our official app for iPhone, available as a free download on the App Store.
post #2 of 25
I sure hope there is an option not to use that hideous "raw" blue highlight, or that it just looks ugly in screen shots and will look more muted on the actual phone.

There are many wonderful shades of blue (which is usually a calming colour), but this is definitely not one of them. Makes me want to scream and hit people.
post #3 of 25
The automatic app updates are enough of a reason to upgrade to iOS7. I'm still not sold on the new looks of the homescreen, especially in terms of the icon design of Apples own apps. Looks "cheapish", tbh. We'll see, release is still a good few months away.
post #4 of 25

Like everything Apple does, a seemingly small change (Update Badge), but when looked at its entirety, iOS7 looks fantastic. :)

post #5 of 25
Subcategories of subcategories of subcategories.

"Kids" isn't acceptable. "Games" isn't acceptable; Games/RTS/Historic is acceptable. "Medical" isn't acceptable; Medical/Integumentary is acceptable. "Education" isn't acceptable; Education/English/Special Education/Grade [#] is acceptable. Everything sortable by price, popularity, and release date.

With so many apps, it's impossible to find anything when there's only a top-level category. Apple did subcategories back when they offered software downloads directly on Apple.com (remember that!); how can it possibly be difficult to do here?!

Originally Posted by helia

I can break your arm if I apply enough force, but in normal handshaking this won't happen ever.
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Originally Posted by helia

I can break your arm if I apply enough force, but in normal handshaking this won't happen ever.
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post #6 of 25

Gzoobee: "I sure hope there is an option not to use that hideous "raw" blue highlight, or that it just looks ugly in screen shots and will look more muted on the actual phone.

There are many wonderful shades of blue (which is usually a calming colour), but this is definitely not one of them....."

 

 

 

I thought this when in the Keynote the message app's outgoing messages were this shade of blue.

 

I can see getting away for the "glass" of OSX, but that color looked a little harsh.

 

Small concern, though. Overall, I like what Apple has done with iOS7. Very elegant and cool! :)

post #7 of 25
Quote:
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App Store

...

 

Why are there categories in the App store like "Books," & "Catalogues"?

 

These are also the shittiest of apps generally speaking and clutter up the store when they aren't even "apps" at all.  Apple should really just force these people into the iBooks store as most of them have less interactivity than the average iBook.  All they are is a bunch of fly-by-night publishers using mostly public domain material that skirt the issue of having an ISBN (and the associated costs), by telling us their book is an "App."  

 

It isn't. 

 

You could get rid of the majority of the absolute crap in the App store by simply enforcing common sense and deleting/moving those two categories. 

post #8 of 25
Quote:
Originally Posted by Gazoobee View Post

I sure hope there is an option not to use that hideous "raw" blue highlight, or that it just looks ugly in screen shots and will look more muted on the actual phone.

There are many wonderful shades of blue (which is usually a calming colour), but this is definitely not one of them. Makes me want to scream and hit people.

 

 

It's all so subjective to like or not like a certain blue. Personally, having it on my phone, i find it looks good. I usually prefer dark blues, but honestly this looks good to my eyes on the phone itself.

William
iMac 21.5" Late 2012, iPad 3 (Works fine for films), iPhone 5 (6 on order)

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William
iMac 21.5" Late 2012, iPad 3 (Works fine for films), iPhone 5 (6 on order)

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post #9 of 25
What they need to add is the ability for a developer to immediately suspend downloads or updates of an app. I've seen many updates where the developer writes in the update description "Don't download, this version doesn't work. Fix coming soon.". If Apple gave the developer a switch to immediately suspend downloads for cases like this, then I can see the auto-updating working. Otherwise, it's very possible that a software update could render an app unusable.

Help! I'm trapped in a white dungeon of amazing precision and impeccable tolerances!

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Help! I'm trapped in a white dungeon of amazing precision and impeccable tolerances!

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post #10 of 25
Why would I care what apps are popular near me? Genius isn't amazingly useful either, but moreso than near me.

Has genius for apps been dropped completely, or just moved off of the bottom bar?

Have they messed with genius for music too?

censored

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post #11 of 25

I felt the way you did until I installed iOS 7 and started using it, and I LOVE it now

post #12 of 25
I'd like to see an improved sorting method for purchased apps - I think it is in descending chronological order currently. Alphabetical would be nice. I'd also like to be able to clear away apps that have already automatically updated.
post #13 of 25
Quote:

The daily routine of manually installing application updates will become a thing of the past,...

 

 

Umm, how about stop thinking that the world will stop if you don't have the bleeding edge version loaded for a few days. A once-a-week check is plenty, and, for most people, even checking once a month would be sufficient.
 

post #14 of 25
The 100% saturation colors are really just too much combined with the thin fonts. The emphasis for showing which information is important just seems all wrong.
post #15 of 25
Quote:
Originally Posted by wdowell View Post

It's all so subjective to like or not like a certain blue. Personally, having it on my phone, i find it looks good. I usually prefer dark blues, but honestly this looks good to my eyes on the phone itself.  

 

I don't mind the blue. What I have an issue with is the fact that I cannot read the system text. It's not that it's too small, it's that it's too thin. It's an attractive phone when large, but doesn't make a great reading experience; but it is beta 1. They need to change it badly. My second issue is with that paralax crap. It's so disorientating and gimmicky.

Citing unnamed sources with limited but direct knowledge of the rumoured device - Comedy Insider (Feb 2014)
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Citing unnamed sources with limited but direct knowledge of the rumoured device - Comedy Insider (Feb 2014)
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post #16 of 25
Quote:
Originally Posted by Crowley View Post

Why would I care what apps are popular near me? Genius isn't amazingly useful either, but moreso than near me.

Has genius for apps been dropped completely, or just moved off of the bottom bar?

Have they messed with genius for music too?

 

I don't use Genius so I don't care about that, but I agree that "apps popular near me" is absurd EXCEPT for apps that have local content, like an app that has "restaurants in Podunk".   

 

Apple used to be great at this stuff, but I really think they've lost it.    I wonder if there are individuals who are making these kinds of decisions on their own.   Much of what we've seen lately seems like decisions are being made by tech people and not necessarily content experts or UI experts.  

 

I do believe that "discovery" is extremely important.    Quantity means nothing to me - I think a curated store would be much better than an open store, but if Apple started evaluating apps and rejecting apps that they didn't like, all hell would break loose.  I don't think anyone has found the formula yet to make discovery work well when there are hundreds of thousands of even millions (in the case of iTunes) of items. 

post #17 of 25
Quote:
Originally Posted by AppleInsider View Post

Users annoyed by the seemingly omnipresent red update badge on the App Store icon will particularly appreciate iOS 7 when it debuts this fall.

That was mentioned in the tax subcommittee:

http://www.businessinsider.com/john-mccain-iphone-app-update-tweet-2013-6

It's never bothered me personally but I've heard that complaint from people I know - 'what does that red thing mean and how do I make it go away?' - so I'm happy that I won't have to sort it out for them. You'd think 'update all' would have been simple enough but some people obviously don't want to be bothered by it.
Quote:
Originally Posted by AppleInsider View Post

Unsurprisingly, only paid applications can be added to the App Store Wish List.

That's a shame because sometimes when you are on 3G, it's not feasible to download a big app but it can be installed on wifi later on.
Quote:
Originally Posted by AppleInsider View Post

In another boost for discoverability, Apple has also promised that a new "Kids" category will come to the App Store in iOS 7. In the first beta provided to developers for testing, the "Kids" parent category is not yet available, though there is a dedicated "Kids" section within the "Games" category.

Hopefully a corresponding 'everybody besides kids' section so I can filter out about 90% of the junk.

No blacklist yet it seems though. I want to be able to hide past purchases and apps I'm not interested in so I can get burn through the apps and find whatever good ones are hiding somewhere in that 800k+ pile. Even if it made the blacklisted items transparent so if I made a mistake I can see them. They just need to make new content stand out.
post #18 of 25

I dislike it when the machine decides for me that the software I need & use every day is going to get an alteration. This is a disaster waiting to happen. Updates are constantly breaking things. New versions are quite often never as good as their predecessors.

 

I am hoping that the disabling of this blind robot "feature" actually works, and sticks, and is not in any way like Adobe's preferences, where whatever decision I make is apparently ignored by Adobe.
 

Hot tub blonde, pouring champagne: "Say when..." Dangerfield: "Right after this drink."
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Hot tub blonde, pouring champagne: "Say when..." Dangerfield: "Right after this drink."
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post #19 of 25
gadgetcanadav2 A developer can already suspend an app from the app store by temporarily removing it from sale. The problem here is with the developer and not Apple.
post #20 of 25
I prefer knowing when an update is needed and a unwanted one being prevented
post #21 of 25


Well there is a bad (Even very very bad news in this change) and so far no one has noticed...

Apps that gets in the top FREE charts will be harder to discover. Why? because until now Free apps were appearing by default in top charts

Now the default sub tab is top paid. Meaning that users will have to get there in 2 clicks

This is also maybe a way to minimize the apps that are trying to game the top charts. But at the same time it is a bad news for users who clearly prefer to download free apps first before paid apps...
post #22 of 25
Quote:
Originally Posted by Ouriel Ohayon View Post

Apps that gets in the top FREE charts will be harder to discover. Why? because until now Free apps were appearing by default in top charts. Now the default sub tab is top paid. Meaning that users will have to get there in 2 clicks

Whoop de frick. That's "hard to discover"? No, having no categories is hard to discover.

Originally Posted by helia

I can break your arm if I apply enough force, but in normal handshaking this won't happen ever.
Reply

Originally Posted by helia

I can break your arm if I apply enough force, but in normal handshaking this won't happen ever.
Reply
post #23 of 25
A little more of iOS 7 is starting to grow on me. Still doesn't feel quite right in certain areas, but I'll admit that some of the visual elements in iOS 6 were indeed cruft that needed to go.

What's helping this little epiphany along? Interestingly enough, it's OS X Mavericks. There, too, Apple removed a lot of visual cruft. And I have to say, that the experience is even better now. It just feels so much more content-focused and slick. So it's prompted me to carry that optimism over to iOS 7.

Still, the thin, poorly-contrasted fonts on light-coloured backgrounds need some re-tooling, as well as the icons. But I can see where Apple is going with it and I approve of the direction. It's a matter of fine-tuning, though.

I'll note that it would have helped a great deal if Apple would have demo'd a tighter beta, in order to, in turn, control the message. This is something that Apple was known for. Instead, we're thrown a disclaimer that it's a work in progress or such-like. Forgive me if I'm mistaken, but while that attitude might be fine for Apple TV, it isn't really fit for a flagship, front-line product.

At any rate, I can see a light at the end of the tunnel, as distant as it still appears. I'm also less perturbed by the comparisons with Windows Phone and Android. If Apple *can* indeed fix these weak and broken OSes in the form of iOS 7, then more power to them. The industry's been riding Apple's coattails for long enough; it might be time to pull another (justified) Xerox.
post #24 of 25
Quote:
Originally Posted by jakeb View Post

The 100% saturation colors are really just too much combined with the thin fonts. The emphasis for showing which information is important just seems all wrong.

Personally, that highly saturated blue they're using reminds me too much of WindowsXP.
post #25 of 25
It's so feminine-looking to me. Soft, pastel and glowy. Can't they offer something a little more masculine in terms of color and detail? Just a first impression...
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