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May 11, 2022

Just a Little Rant: Apple App Store Why Are You Like This

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Developing an app is a journey with many stages.

My favourite stage is when the app is functional and does the magical thing that the client wanted in the first place. It looks good. It works well. It’s ready to ship.

My least favourite stage is the unfortunate process of submitting apps to the app stores, especially Apple’s app stores.

For any app developers out there, I’m certain I’m singing a familiar tune. Hoops. Many, many hoops. A very difficult to manage interface. The complete non-cooperation with non-Mac computers and accounts that aren’t owned by the submitting company or client.

Everything appears to be set up to make it as difficult as possible to be an app developer trying to do anything other than the out of the box standard app.

Before I get too ranty, I should say that Apple does do some of these things for a reason. Their concern is their end user rather than any developer. They want the App store to be a magical utopia for Apple users and their 20th iteration of the same phone, just in rose gold this time.

That’s fair. They want to limit what kind of apps get shipped to their users because let’s face it, Apple’s hardware doesn’t play nicely outside of the Apple parameters. This is how they maintain absolute control over their products (and the money they make from them).

However, one thing that Apple has done to make developers pull out their collective hair, and try to find ridiculous ways to circumvent the system is by forcing developers to use Apple Pay, and pay the exorbitant fee for the privilege of doing so.

That’s right - if you charge any fees in your app for any reason, you have to use Apple Pay, and you have to give them 15% - 30% of the transaction. There is no other payment processor that I have come across that can get away with this gargantuan, almost extortionary fee, so how does Apple do it?

They have convinced app users that the only way to get an app is through the App Store.

Here’s the thing, though. T’isn’t.

Firstly - are you certain you need an app for that? You might, but is it possible that a really well designed responsive website could do the job?

Having an app sounds sexy and borderline critical for success, but apps for most businesses have very limited utility.

Secondly - are you certain that the only way you can get the app to your end user is through the app store?

For some apps, 100% you do, so get ready to pay the fee.

For other apps, there are ways to avoid the hassle…..

And hassle it is. It adds about 2 weeks worth of time to development to prep the files, submit the app, go through the review process and work out the ways in which your app violates Apple’s multitudinous regulations.

Plus the ways in which you can offer discounts or freebies on your own product is curtailed by Apple Pay’s limitations.

So, as a non-Apple user, I am here to start a revolution. Let’s say NO to Apple’s tyranny. Let’s get Apple users to rejoice at coming across an app that they don’t have to go to the App Store to download!

Let’s program wildly useful and manageable apps that work on any device, anywhere without the hassle of developing natively.

It’s time for the PWAs of the world to stand tall and say, yes! You can easily access our platform on any device!

Yes, you can access our app just one time without having to download the dumb thing then never use it again!

Yes, you can use the same app on your computer without installing a darn thing!

PWAs RISE and FIGHT the APPLE!

Who’s with me?!?

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