Tuesday, November 20, 2012

App Scams

Cabel Sasser:

1. Scammer makes an extremely simple iOS app and submits it to Apple.

2. Once it’s approved, they change the screenshots, description, and name — things you can edit at any time. Piggyback off a popular game!

It seems like demos/trials would be an easy solution to this problem. The same basic issue applies to legitimate apps. I’ve had people buy my apps from the Mac App Store and be unhappy because they did not include a feature that they thought would be in the app, but which wasn’t mentioned in the description.

Of course, this also happens, to an extent, for apps purchased directly from my Web site. But these are easier to deal with because I can quickly refund the purchase at no cost, whereas with the Mac App Store I have to direct the customer to Apple support, which has an official policy of not offering refunds.

Update (2013-01-09): Apple:

Beginning January 9, app screenshots will be locked in iTunes Connect once your app has been approved. New screenshots may be uploaded when you submit a binary for an update to an existing app or a new app.

It would be better if Apple could approve screenshot changes without requiring a new binary that may take weeks to review.

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