alistairphillips.com

I’m : a web and mobile developer based in the Manning Valley, Australia.


Arbiter of the App Store

Earlier this week Dash, the beloved developer tool, was removed from the App Store due to allegations of review manipulation. Hard to believe that could be true for a super niche and popular app without much in the line of competition.

Aside from the iOS and Mac App Store losing a great piece of software existing customers are now left out in the cold as there's no longer a way to download this purchase from the Mac App Store. Every trace has been removed from the Purchases tab, it's as if the app never existed.

This is a solemn reminder that in the digital age you're simply licensed, for a period of time, to run software, listen to music and watch movies. When it comes to the cloud you own nothing. We've seen this before when Disney and Pixar iTunes purchases were removed. Although in that instance were added back but not without a fight.

Apple is the arbiter of the App Store and will do as they see fit but their actions are customer hostile and I can't imagine what it'll do for Tim Cook's beloved "Customer Sat" scores. This one definitely isn't in the interests of customers - or for that matter developers as Apple is making quite clear who the boss is. The Mac App Store is already a ghost town and the last thing Apple should be doing is scaring developers off the platform.

In my case, as I use the app daily, I had the app installed and was able to migrate my license but occasional users might not be so lucky. This is just another reason for me to avoid the Mac App Store even more than I do today.