Friday, October 23, 2009

jTribe is Hiring

We are looking for an Account Manager to join our team.
If you are a self-driven person who is passionate about mobile applications for iPhone, Android and the Mobile Web then we should talk.
We offer a great work environment at our Openhub coworking space in the City of Melbourne, Australia. We believe that the mobile application development space will experience rapid growth. jTribe and the whole team is going to participate in that boom.
So, why don't you send us your details to patrick at jtribe dot com dot au.

Update of Pinpoint now in AppStore

A new update of Pinpoint Lite and Pinpoint Pro are now available at the iTunes AppStore.

These two simple utility apps have started as an experiment to show how free and paid app perform in the AppStore. The apps became more popular than we expected and that's why we push out some regular feature updates. Pinpoint Lite is currently ranked 36 in TOP FREE APPS under Navigation. The free version allows sending a location via email where the pro version (currently US $0.99) allows to copy past the location into any other iPhone app like SMS or a twitter client.

The two improvements are:
  1. Choose between Satellite view and Map view
  2. Send email straight from within the app
The app is simple but useful. Check it out at the Apple AppStore: Pinpoint Lite and Pinpoint Pro.

Monday, October 12, 2009

Apple rejections that wont improve the quality of iPhone apps in the AppStore

I think Apple does a great job reviewing iPhone apps for the AppStore BUT there are some inconsistencies that drive me mad.
How can it be that Apple approves an app and later when submitting an update (or even bugfix) they reject it for something that already existed in the app that was approved. This looks pretty inconsistent to me.
Pinpoint Lite and Pinpoint Pro are two apps we use to gage the "ease" of iPhone app submissions (or sometimes the pain related to iPhone submissions). These two apps are in the AppStore for month now and they have been approved without a problem.
12 days ago I submitted the Pinpoint apps with some new features.
  1. First, it took Apple 12 days to look at the update
  2. It was rejected for a reason that has nothing to do with the update.
The apps where always using the MapKit API and require Internet connection to function correctly. Actually, the apps are not checking whether Internet is available and they never have and Apple did not see that as a problem and accepted the apps several when first submitted. Now with the update Apple reviewers decided that it does not comply to the iPhone Human Interface Guidelines (HIG) and therefore thy rejected the update.
That's would have been great feedback when the first version was submitted. However, rejecting the update will not improve the user experience because the current app that is still available in the AppStore does not comply to the HIG either and people can still download the app. Even worst, if a developer has a bugfix that would actually improve some other aspect of the user experience it still could be rejected for the previously overlooked issue. Unfortunately, this inconsistent process does not improve the user experience at all. Buggy app versions stick around in the AppStore longer because any improvement that was rejected for the wrong reason will need to join the "review queue" again.
So why is Apple so inconsistent in their review process? Please leave a comment if you had similar experience.

Wednesday, October 7, 2009

Top 10 Grossing Android Apps

The Apple App store recently added a top grossing list to go alongside top free and top paid lists. This I'm sure is in response to the race to the bottom phenomonem. App developers attempt to have their app featured in the top paid and free lists as users browse these lists first when looking for apps to download. These lists are based on download numbers alone and therefore developers priced their app as low as possible to obtain high download counts. The top grossing list attempts to highlight apps that are still achieving high download numbers combined with a high price. I like to think of this list as demonstrating apps that deliver high value for their price.

The Android Market place has yet to introduce such a list but as it shows a download count range for each app we can put together our own approximation. The graph below shows (click on the graph to zoom in) the top 10 grossing apps in the US Android Market place based on estimated downloads and current price. The top app at just under $300,000 is the IM app Hello IM!, followed mostly by utility apps and a few games. If you find this kind of snippet analysis on the Android Market Place you should follow us on Twitter or drop into