Apple Adjusts Its App Review Process Ever-So-Slightly

Posted on August 31, 2020 by Paul Thurrott in Apple, iOS, Mobile with 5 Comments

Following through on a promise buried in a press release during WWDC 2020, Apple today made minor adjustments to its app review process.

“We’ve updated the app review process as announced at WWDC20,” an Apple statement notes. “For apps that are already on the App Store, bug fixes will no longer be delayed over guideline violations except for those related to legal issues. You’ll instead be able to address guideline violations in your next submission. And now, in addition to appealing decisions about whether an app violates guidelines, you can suggest changes to the guidelines. We also encourage you to submit your App Store and Apple development platform suggestions so we can continue to improve experiences for the developer community.”

Apple’s changes come in the wake of mounting pressure by developers and antitrust regulators for the firm to relax its grip on the mobile app market that drives the iPhone and open up its opaque policies to outside scrutiny. And while they do address a few obvious issues with Apple’s policies—the firm was infamously preventing app developers from shipping bug and security fixes when there was a policy dispute—they don’t address the biggest problems that antitrust regulators are now investigating.

And they certainly don’t help Epic, which was banned from the App Store late last week for violating Apple’s policies on in-app purchases. In fact, the comment about “bug fixes will no longer be delayed over guideline violations except for those related to legal issues” in the Apple statement appear to be directed at Epic at any other developer foolish enough to take on the world’s most powerful corporation.

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Comments (5)

5 responses to “Apple Adjusts Its App Review Process Ever-So-Slightly”

  1. Avatar

    lvthunder

    So now Microsoft should file one of those suggestions to change the rules so they can get Xcloud in the store. I'm guessing they would be more willing to change going this route then the route Epic chose. The limitations on VM's sound like an issue of the past then the iPhone was killing the cellular data networks.

  2. Avatar

    Chris_Kez

    "We also encourage you to submit your App Store and Apple development platform suggestions so we can continue to improve experiences for the developer community"

    


    • Avatar

      lvthunder

      In reply to Chris_Kez:

      I'm willing to bet they will listen to the suggestions if they are well written and explain the benefits to both Apple and the community. Microsoft should try with XCloud. I bet the rules with connecting to remote VMs are from the beginning when the iPhone was killing the cell phone network.

  3. Avatar

    wiley

    In reply to lvthunder:


    ... and I'm willing to bet they won't even bother to reply to suggestions to tell their developers, "You're holding it wrong." They've certainly never bothered in the past if no court cases were involved.


    Apple is adding a feedback mechanism just as multiple countries are starting up antitrust investigations of their business practices. They haven't suddenly started giving a crap what developers think of their policies after ignoring them for over a decade; they've suddenly realized that pretending their policies and processes aren't a black box will look a lot better for them in court.

  4. Avatar

    JE

    In reply to lvthunder:

    I’d happily take both those bets. If you think their actions are guided by the best outcomes for customers rather than first and foremost about their strategic ability to defend and grow their revenue streams, I think you are a little naive.

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