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Apple rolling out more advanced App Store review system

post #1 of 19
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Apple this week took another major step towards improving the controversial rating system on its fledgling App Store by allowing shoppers to filter reviews of applications by version number.

The changes, when finalized, will let shoppers see combined review averages for all versions of a specific application dating back to its inception or choose to filter reviews by version number.

With the latter, the App Store offers the option of isolating reviews and review averages from the most current version of an application, thereby providing shoppers with a more accurate assessment of the current state of an application unaffected by ratings from previous, and possibly troublesome, versions.

Under the new system, each review is also dated, providing a bit more clarity for shoppers in the market for a specific app. Unfortunately, the new system appears to be more of a work-in-progress than a finalized design.

After a cursory investigation, AppleInsider discovered that isolating reviews by 'current version' isn't functioning as one would expect. For instance, Bolt Creative's Pocket God title has 5700 total reviews, over a thousand of which are for the current version. Yet the App Store says there aren't enough reviews of the current version to provide an average. The case is similar for many of the other top-performing applications.

Meanwhile, a drop-down menu for sorting reviews also appears to be fairly new. It offers shoppers the option of sorting all reviews, or reviews for a specific version, by "Most Helpful," "Most Favorable," "Most Critical," or "Most Recent."



The changes are the latest by the Cupertino-based iPhone maker geared towards cleaning up the image of its iPhone app rating system, which initially allowed any iTunes Store account holder to lodge a review of any application, regardless of whether they had downloaded it.

This approach caused havoc for some iPhone developers while artificially benefiting others when rogue users -- sometimes developers themselves -- began to exploit the loosely regulated system to prop certain apps while attempting to taint the reputation of others.



As a result, Apple two weeks ago began purging many of those early reviews from the digital download store, leaving only those filed by legitimate customers. In general, the result for many iPhone developers was a significant reduction in the review count for their applications but a higher aggregate review rating on average.
post #2 of 19
... never mind ...

     197619842014  

     Where were you when the hammer flew?  

 

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     197619842014  

     Where were you when the hammer flew?  

 

MacBook Pro Retina, 13", 2.5 GHz, 8 GB RAM, 256 GB SSD

iPhone 5s • iPad mini Retina • Chromebook Pixel • Nexus 7

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post #3 of 19
The version notation is of great help. I can't tell you how many app reviews I read, only to find halfway through, the poster was talking about an older version; that's only if it was even mentioned.

As such, I made it a habit to include the version I was writing about when I posted a review. This will alleviate that chore. Thanks, Apple!

/
post #4 of 19
This will be infinitely helpful. Big improvement. I think I submitted this request 2-3x myself on Apple's website.
post #5 of 19
Very smart, a few times I've seen an app I wanted with terrible reviews and got brave enough to pull the trigger only to find that all the issues I've read about were resolved and the app is fine.
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post #6 of 19
One thing I would really like is the ability to sort apps by review score, instead of just 'Most Popular.'
post #7 of 19
On the iPhone itself with the listing of programs, especially new releases, it will only show very faint stars to represent that the rating is based on all versions (since the new release has no ratings) and says no reviews. Makes it much harder to see the value of reviews whenever a program has been updated. Every update will always say no reviews initially. Both the current and overall ratings should be listed on the iPhone like it is being done via iTunes. Kind of discourages updates too since the existing "good reviews" get pushed out of the "current version reviews" each time a new version is released.

The other problem is that if someone wrote a written review for one version, and then used the "rate on delete" function later on a different version, then the text of the review that was from the past gets labeled as being part of the current version. This defeats the purpose of tagging dates and versions. If someone uses the "rate on delete" from the iPhone (or the new rating selection in iTunes without a text review), it should completly replace any previous reviews by that user and not just change the date and version number.
post #8 of 19
They've also gone someway towards fixing the idiotic situation where some people seemed to think that a 1 star review was a good one!

I've blogged about this and the what Apple have done to help here http://tinyurl.com/dj29mh
post #9 of 19
Fledgling
post #10 of 19
Quote:
Originally Posted by DaveH View Post

They've also gone someway towards fixing the idiotic situation where some people seemed to think that a 1 star review was a good one!

I've blogged about this and the what Apple have done to help here http://tinyurl.com/dj29mh

I kept wondering why some people had posted rave reviews, only to leave a 1-star rating. It's like the old saying goes, make something idiot-proof and they'll just build a better idiot. I know, I know... harsh.

Proud AAPL stock owner.

 

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Proud AAPL stock owner.

 

GOA

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post #11 of 19
More advanced than that enormous dartboard they've been using up until now?
post #12 of 19
Quote:
Originally Posted by teejaysplace24 View Post

More advanced than that enormous dartboard they've been using up until now?

Yes, that and how about a decent search function that one could actually FIND.

The App Store really feels like it was thrown together and borders on unusable.
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Macintosh: It just WORKS!
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post #13 of 19
Quote:
Originally Posted by jeffharris View Post

Yes, that and how about a decent search function that one could actually FIND.

The App Store really feels like it was thrown together and borders on unusable.

I LOL'd pretty hard at that. Thanks.

How much more of a dumbed-down, simplified interface do you need?
post #14 of 19
Quote:
Originally Posted by jeffharris View Post

Yes, that and how about a decent search function that one could actually FIND.

The App Store really feels like it was thrown together and borders on unusable.

The Horrendous "find" feature on iTunes is the one most aggravating part of the software.

If I know some portion of lyrics to a song I go type it in Google to find who sang it, and then if I want to buy it I go back to iTunes. They should include lyrics with all songs, there's a feature for it built right in to all songs, but you have to manually add it.

But worse, even just typing approximately the name of an artist or album or spelling it phonetically often doesn't return the name of the artist.

These changes in the App Store are welcome but they need to go a lot further, IMO.
(.mac registered user since July 18, 2002)
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(.mac registered user since July 18, 2002)
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post #15 of 19
Quote:
Originally Posted by Steven R Wilson View Post

The Horrendous "find" feature on iTunes is the one most aggravating part of the software.

I like iTunes, but hate iTunes' iTunes Store layout. It's so cluttered and very un-Apple. Despite my long time use of iPods and extensive purchase of video and apps from the iTS, I had not purchases music until recently. The full catalog iTunes Plus was nice, but the real motivator for me was the ability to purchase over AT&T's network on the iPhone. The Store access from the iPhone/Touch is much simpler and cleaner.

Quote:
They should include lyrics with all songs, there's a feature for it built right in to all songs, but you have to manually add it.

I'm sure they would if they could, but they can offer a play to put lyrics so they do. Lyrics aren't under the same licensing as songs so there is major legal hurdle to include them. It would certainly be nice, though.

PS: I've tried to make an AppleScript that would take the technical issue from summary for each song (ie: birtate, codec, ID3 Tag, file size, sample rate, date added, play count, etc.) and the other info from the other info like year and comments, parse them from the neta data and iTunes Library file and add them to the lyrics section. Lyrics still could be added, too. I such at scripting so If anyone knows of such a script please reply.

Quote:
But worse, even just typing approximately the name of an artist or album or spelling it phonetically often doesn't return the name of the artist.

Google is still the easiest way to find such things.
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Dick Applebaum on whether the iPad is a personal computer: "BTW, I am posting this from my iPad pc while sitting on the throne... personal enough for you?"
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post #16 of 19
Apple needs to let us buy movies and get rid of rent being the only option. Click yes if you agree.
post #17 of 19
Quote:
Originally Posted by CipherMethod View Post

Apple needs to let us buy movies and get rid of rent being the only option. Click yes if you agree.

You didn't append link-spam to your reply so I don't think you are trolling, but it does have that feel.

This article isn't about iTS movies and movies on iTS only had sales, no rentals, when it was first introduced. Since people prefer to rent video before buying this was a big issue. The movies that are SD, HD or both and purchase, rental or both varies greatly as rights are generally owned by many. Eventually things will even out.
Dick Applebaum on whether the iPad is a personal computer: "BTW, I am posting this from my iPad pc while sitting on the throne... personal enough for you?"
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Dick Applebaum on whether the iPad is a personal computer: "BTW, I am posting this from my iPad pc while sitting on the throne... personal enough for you?"
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post #18 of 19
Fledgling?



Please don't give me reasons to think one of my favorite sites is managed by a 13 yr old trying to use big-boy words.
post #19 of 19
Quote:
Originally Posted by BB Sting View Post

Fledgling

Quote:
Originally Posted by ZagMac View Post

Fledgling?



Please don't give me reasons to think one of my favorite sites is managed by a 13 yr old trying to use big-boy words.

Exactly what problem do you two have with the chosen term?

Here is what the New Oxford American Dictionary's thesaurus states:
adjective
fledgling industries emerging, emergent, sunrise, dawning, embryonic, infant, nascent; developing, in the making, budding, up-and-coming, rising. antonym declining, mature.
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