App Store, China, Apple

In what is certain to be a welcome move for app developers, Apple has announced that all the reviews and ratings their app has accumulated over the period of its existence on the app store, will no longer disappear when the devs release an update.

This has been a longstanding issue with the iOS app store. You could release the best app ever and accumulate a host of reviews and fantastic ratings, but when the time comes to upgrade your app to add in new features or sort out bugs — poof! Your ratings just disappear.

Apple’s reasoning is this: An app changes over time until it hardly resembles what it used to be. So for instance, the reviews given to an app half a dozen years ago (both good and bad) are likely to have become redundant due to the evolution of the app into something else over the years. And new versions used to be way more uncommon as approvals took over a week.

Today though, times have changed and reviews and ratings have become precious commodities. What’s more, getting your update approved takes merely hours now and as such, developers have the option to release multiple updates within the same day. And many developers make liberal use of this facility, releasing better version after better version.

As such it hardly makes any sense for reviews and ratings to disappear and the app to start from a clean slate every time its updated. The same rule also had the potential to keep developers from making frequent improvements to their app. But no longer.

The new policy will come into effect from September, and will accompany iOS 11’s roll out. Meanwhile, you will still have the option to delete all your past ratings and start off with a clean slate if that is what you would like to do.

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