Wednesday, May 1, 2019

Folder Access and Inconsistent App Review

Matthias Gansrigler:

It’s the typical case.

A feature that was approved with a previous build suddenly is not allowed anymore.

I bet if I remove this feature as requested, I’ll get rejected again, because Yoink is able to install a (macOS Mojave) Quick Action (which was also approved before).


2.4.5 Apps distributed via the Mac App Store have some additional requirements to keep in mind:

(i) They must be appropriately sandboxed, and follow macOS File System Documentation. They should also only use the appropriate macOS APIs for modifying user data stored by other Apps (e.g. bookmarks, Address Book, or Calendar entries).

All he’s trying to do is let the user click a button to install a PDF service. You’d think that would be allowed, since the app is sandboxed, the installation is happening due to explicit user request, and it prompts to allow access to the PDF Services folder. As far as I can see, the documentation doesn’t say not to do this. There is no API for installing PDF services, so the only alternative is to put up some instructions and ask the user to do it manually (which is what I had to do for EagleFiler). What’s the point of having the entitlement if you aren’t allowed to actually use it? Or, rather, how can something so basic not be handled consistently by App Review?

I’ve heard similar stories from other developers. And when I’ve asked whether certain designs/features would be allowed for my apps, I could only get perfunctory responses saying that I needed to follow the guidelines and would have to develop the feature and submit the app before finding out whether it would be acceptable.


2 Comments RSS · Twitter

Obviously it would be nice if I could have Keyboard Maestro in the Mac App Store, but there are many times that I am hugely thankful that it is impossible and I don't have to worry about App Review’s inconsistent behaviour.

The thought of spending ages implementing a feature only to have it pointlessly rejected by App Review would sap my motivation. It's the reason the Keyboard Maestro Control iOS app languishes - I simply can't face the App Store process.

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