Apple suggests App Store redesign in the works

Posted:
in iPhone edited January 2014
Acknowledging that there is room for improvement in the current offering, Apple chief executive Tim Cook said Tuesday that Apple is looking for new ways to categorize software in the App Store on the iPhone and iPod touch.



With over 65,000 applications currently available in the App Store, it can be difficult for users to find new applications with the current categorization methods. Cook said during Tuesday's earnings report conference call that Apple has "some ideas" on how to improve the experience.



"As you know, today we do it by type of app and also have show popular apps and top-selling apps, et cetera," Cook said. "We realize there?s opportunity there for further improvement and are working on that."



Cook's statement was in response to a question from analyst Charles Wolf of Needham & Co. Wolf also suggested, in his question to Cook, that there is currently a "race to the bottom" in terms of pricing of software.



Currently, many applications receive the most exposure by being one of the top 25 downloaded on the App Store. Typically, the top 25 is populated by software priced at $0.99.



"I?ve noticed that there are an increasing number of $0.99 offerings," Wolf said to Cook. "Do you regard this as a concern and if so, are you taking any steps to enable consumers to separate quality apps from the garbage?"



In response, Cook gave no indication that Apple would interfere with developers' pricing structures. The executive said that each developer sets their own price, and they are going to do what makes the most business sense for them.



"I would think as the installed base grows more and more and more," Cook said, "it makes more and more sense to have a bit lower prices -- but that?s totally up to the developers, and I am sure each of them may do that in a little different manner."



In his analysis of Apple's earnings report, Wolf highlighted what he believes is the difficulty the company has ahead of it in restructuring the App Store. He said developers are unsure how to price their applications, and customers need more to tell them whether software is worth their money.



The $0.99 popularity, he said, probably stems from users' expectations from the iTunes Music Store. But the low price point, Wolf said, has created a "wasteland of mediocre applications."



"In some respects, the App Store has taken its place alongside YouTube, where poor taste is the defining metric," Wolf wrote. "More ominously, it has led to a deterioration of the entire pricing structure for iPhone applications. The risk is that developers who hope to build quality applications that have a long shelf life may be discouraged from doing so because prospective development costs exceed the revenues they expect to earn on the applications. In short, this race to the bottom has the potential to degrade the overall equality of the applications sold at the App Store."



Apple's App Store recently turned 1 year old, and the company announced that it has had more than 1.5 billion downloads so far. Cook repeatedly acknowledged the success of the App Store during Tuesday's conference call.



"The App Store is a key strategic differentiator of the iPhone and iPod Touch experience," he said, "and we believe that outstanding software is the key ingredient for a great mobile experience."
«13

Comments

  • Reply 1 of 56
    teckstudteckstud Posts: 6,476member
    Here's for hoping for a previewing of an App itself before purchasing.
  • Reply 2 of 56
    irelandireland Posts: 17,785member
    They are going to improve things in the future. Full Story at 11.
  • Reply 3 of 56
    richlrichl Posts: 2,213member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by teckstud View Post


    Here's for hoping for a previewing of an App itself before purchasing.



    That's the main thing missing from the app store, in my opinion.



    The best implementation that I've come across is Xbox Live Arcade. Once you've played a demo and decided that you like a a game, you can upgrade to the full version instantly. All of your saved games and settings remain intact. Microsoft doesn't allow games on XBLA without a demo so good games rise to the top.



    Microsoft doesn't get much right but XBLA is a fantastic system.
  • Reply 4 of 56
    rot'napplerot'napple Posts: 1,839member
    Does the App store in it's current format have search capabilities? Like if I wanted to find all the apps that track mileage for business for your vehicle, can I input those parameters and have only those related apps show up.



    It get boring of going through 27 pages of apps to try and view just a few apps geared to your current needs.



    C'mon Search...
  • Reply 5 of 56
    irelandireland Posts: 17,785member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by Rot'nApple View Post


    Does the App store in it's current format have search capabilities? Like if I wanted to find all the apps that track mileage for business for your vehicle, can I input those parameters and have only those related apps show up.



    It get boring of going through 27 pages of apps to try and view just a few apps geared to your current needs.



    C'mon Search...



    Yes, the App Store does have search. Do you even have an iPhone or iPod touch?
  • Reply 6 of 56
    gregalexandergregalexander Posts: 1,399member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by Rot'nApple View Post


    Does the App store in it's current format have search capabilities? Like if I wanted to find all the apps that track mileage for business for your vehicle, can I input those parameters and have only those related apps show up.



    It has search capabilities, but not hugely sophisticated.



    Type "Chess" and you'll get many, many chess apps. But try "mileage tracker" and you'll have a harder time - as they may use other names like "car logbook" etc.
  • Reply 7 of 56
    barctorbarctor Posts: 2member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by Rot'nApple View Post


    Does the App store in it's current format have search capabilities? Like if I wanted to find all the apps that track mileage for business for your vehicle, can I input those parameters and have only those related apps show up.



    It get boring of going through 27 pages of apps to try and view just a few apps geared to your current needs.



    C'mon Search...



    1) Yes, you can search: http://www.portablehole.com/images/app_store_search.jpg



    2) I just googled "iphone track mileage for business" and found a few apps with 5 seconds of effort: http://www.google.ca/search?hl=en&q=...meta=&aq=f&oq=
  • Reply 8 of 56
    dreyfus2dreyfus2 Posts: 1,072member
    Quote:

    "In some respects, the App Store has taken its place alongside YouTube, where poor taste is the defining metric," Wolf wrote.



    I keep hearing this (especially from Pre and BB addicts though) and I just can't see it. I went through the top 50 free and top 50 paid apps on the German iTunes store, and there is maybe one example for poor taste (and even that is debatable) among 100 apps. Not each of these apps is useful for everyone, but I have not been to any store in which I liked absolutely everything ever. There are also several 3, 5 and 10 USD apps among the top 50 and even four which are more expensive. I do not think there is anything unusual about this. If they could make search results a bit more telling (just an icon, the developer name and the rating don't even tell me what an app does in most cases), and maybe split the store into a business/productivity and a fun/games section, each having their own top 50s, then it should be OK.
  • Reply 9 of 56
    patsfan83patsfan83 Posts: 156member
    Solid apps are worth the price. For example, you can get plenty of so-so games for free, but I'm willing to pay $7 for Tiger Woods from EA Sports because I know I'm going to get quality, and will most likely be updated if there are problems.



    Same goes with IM clients...I tried out fring and Palringo, but they just didn't cut it for me with gchat. So I look into BeejiveIM- it gets great reviews, it's in the top sellers list, and I throw down $10. It's the best app I've paid for, push works great, and works with all popular IM clients. They also have the responsibility of keeping up the app to their paying customers.



    Regarding demoing apps...I imagine this would be fairly easy to implement...add a demo button to the app's page...it downloads the full app as usual, however it has a timer of a week. After a week, you get a pop up dialog box on your phone asking if you want to purchase it or not...you say yes, it prompts you for your itunes password, and the app is now yours. If you say no, you rate it and it gets deleted.
  • Reply 10 of 56
    sandausandau Posts: 1,230member
    I just wish I could arrange 6 pages of application icons in iTunes. wtf already. yeah, i can search, but I want to arrange....and why limit 4 icons on the bottom on the iPhone? time to hack.
  • Reply 11 of 56
    teckstudteckstud Posts: 6,476member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by PatsFan83 View Post


    Solid apps are worth the price. For example, you can get plenty of so-so games for free, but I'm willing to pay $7 for Tiger Woods from EA Sports because I know I'm going to get quality, and will most likely be updated if there are problems.



    Same goes with IM clients...I tried out fring and Palringo, but they just didn't cut it for me with gchat. So I look into BeejiveIM- it gets great reviews, it's in the top sellers list, and I throw down $10. It's the best app I've paid for, push works great, and works with all popular IM clients. They also have the responsibility of keeping up the app to their paying customers.



    Regarding demoing apps...I imagine this would be fairly easy to implement...add a demo button to the app's page...it downloads the full app as usual, however it has a timer of a week. After a week, you get a pop up dialog box on your phone asking if you want to purchase it or not...you say yes, it prompts you for your itunes password, and the app is now yours. If you say no, you rate it and it gets deleted.



    The whole process could be simplified with a preview rather than a guessing game whether or not you'll like the App.
  • Reply 12 of 56
    brucepbrucep Posts: 2,823member
    THE APP store redesign is for the new tablet and also fOr all its devices will now have there own app versions .



    And it will also be twitter proof
  • Reply 13 of 56
    alanskyalansky Posts: 235member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by Rot'nApple View Post


    Does the App store in it's current format have search capabilities? Like if I wanted to find all the apps that track mileage for business for your vehicle, can I input those parameters and have only those related apps show up.



    Dream on! The App Store search function can't even find an app by name half the time. A drastically improved search function is definitely one of the things sorely needed at the App Store.
  • Reply 14 of 56
    alanskyalansky Posts: 235member
    I'm glad to see that they're thinking about this issue at Apple. From where I sit, it looks like el cheapo disposable apps are threatening to overwhelm the App Store and trivialize one of the most remarkable devices in existence.
  • Reply 15 of 56
    shaun, ukshaun, uk Posts: 1,050member
    What they need is more subcategories. For example under Sports app's they could have a subcategory for each sport or under books have a subcategory for each genre.



    It would make casually looking through for something a lot easier.
  • Reply 16 of 56
    I used to go into the App Store every day to see what was new, but, that New page updates very infrequently so you see the same apps there day after day. As a result, I may look now once a week, or less. I don't know where all these new apps that are added everyday appear. Apple buries them too deep for anyone to bother looking.
  • Reply 17 of 56
    Seems to me a simple solution for demoing an app would be for Apple to offer an iPhone/touch "emulator" either running under iTunes (so it can be used by both PC and Mac platforms) or to offer a free emulator program specifically for the PC platform ...... similar to the emulator included in the SDK which only runs on the Mac.
  • Reply 18 of 56
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by Rot'nApple View Post


    Does the App store in it's current format have search capabilities? Like if I wanted to find all the apps that track mileage for business for your vehicle, can I input those parameters and have only those related apps show up.



    It get boring of going through 27 pages of apps to try and view just a few apps geared to your current needs.



    The App Store does have a so-called "Advanced Search" search feature, but it's extremely weak.



    You can't select multiple app categories or App ratings or release date, like VersionTracker or MacUpdate's advanced search have.



    The other thing that drives me nuts is the way things are grouped and how apps are categorized. I do searches for business apps and have to weed through a slew of games, hot Thai chick and religious apps. Religious apps alone can fall into several categories: Lifestyle, Reference, Education and Books. Sorry, but aside from books, those categories simply do not apply.



    Religious apps should have their own Religion and Spirituality category. I really don't care what religion it is Western, Eastern, Wicca, Astrology, Tarot, whatever, but they should be separate and not clumped into legitimate categories like reference and education.



    Apple should also add a 17+ Section, so that adults can download whatever apps they want without the prudes, church ladies and nanny patrols scolding. It also will help those who are against such apps to avoid them.
  • Reply 19 of 56
    IMHO, the app store needs work. In fact, the whole iTunes store is cumbersome to use.



    For example, if I'm in the app store and enter a key word in the seach box, why do I get a huge listing of songs, videos...oh, and apps of course...with that key word in them?



    If I took the time to naviagate to the app store, I only want to see the app results. If I wanted to see everything with the key word in it, I'd go to the main iTunes home page.
  • Reply 20 of 56
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by jeffharris View Post


    Apple should also add a 17+ Section, so that adults can download whatever apps they want without the prudes, church ladies and nanny patrols scolding. It also will help those who are against such apps to avoid them.



    Unfortunately, that won't stop the prudes from complaining. They typically want to inflict their own morals on everyone else.
Sign In or Register to comment.