Apple has provided a good reason as to why you shouldn’t believe App Store review ratings

Apple has provided a good reason as to why you shouldn't believe App Store review ratings

That’s how the Podcasts app went from a publicly embarrassing 1.8-star score all the way to 4.6 stars in a little over a month without any actual fixes, as developer and App Store watchdog Kosta Eleftheriou points out. And it’s still going up: according to AppFigures data, the app has been getting thousands of ratings every day since November 9th, with the vast, overwhelming majority of them issuing a 5-star score.

In case you think there’s a impeccably sensible clarification for this, you could be right — it might certainly be that individuals who bother to yield audits tend to be irate, and a parcel of individuals who cherish Apple Podcasts and never bothered to see it up within the App Store (keep in mind, it’s preinstalled!) are at last adjusting things out.

Apple has provided a good reason as to why you shouldn't believe App Store review ratings

Here are a few more of the “Most Recent” reviews of the Apple Podcasts app:

“Amazing show! Hilarious and well researched,” writes SammyAls, adding, “The dynamic is amazing, and the content is SO needed! Love this.”
“Mobley has Depth and Insight,” writes xbacksideslider. “Nice to listen to thoughtful and factual podcast. Far from the superficial emotional appeals to envy and self congratulating faux empathy that so dominate popular culture.”
“The table,” says Jkimble6091. “Being a young millionaire listening to Anthony Oneal keeps me on track during all the ups and downs of life.”

I wondered if maybe this was a common confusion with podcast apps, where listeners think they’re reviewing a podcast instead of the app itself. But no, I didn’t see that obvious pattern when I checked reviews for other top podcast apps in the App Store. Almost every review on competing apps was a review of the apps themselves.

Apple confirmed to The Verge that it’s using a new prompt but claims it’s nothing out of the ordinary. “With iOS 15.1 released last month, Apple Podcasts began prompting listeners to leave a rating and review just like most third-party apps — using the standard Rating & Review prompt available to all developers,” wrote an Apple spokesperson who only agreed to comment if they were not named.

We weren’t able to track down a copy of the prompt ourselves to confirm when and where it appears or what it looks like — which seems important if people are getting confused — but it is indeed a standard feature of the App Store, one you can even turn off if you like under Settings > App Store > In-App Ratings & Reviews.

But intentional or not, standard or not, the problem with star scores is there’s no way to tell whether they’re legitimate. We don’t know if someone pressed a five-star button because they loved the app, or thought they were rating the podcast itself, or just wanted to close the prompt as quickly as possible. We don’t know if Apple is prompting everyone, or just its most dedicated fans, or some other algorithmic subset that just happened to give it an advantage. Some bad reportedly even buy star scores for their egregious App Store scams, and it’s impossible for most App Store shoppers to tell. We’ve even seen an iOS app that refuses to open unless you give it a good score.

But with Apple Podcasts, the company is using the same broken star score system that uplifts scammers for its own benefit as well. And it’s a crystal clear example of why you can’t trust star scores — because everyone knows this was a 1.8-star app just last month with many valid lingering complaints, and nothing’s fundamentally changed. It’s the exact same app today as it was then.

Apple has provided a good reason as to why you shouldn
About VinTech 563 Articles
VinTech is currently a student in the Federal University Of Technology, Akure, Nigeria. His passion for prompt updates has led him to the blogging field. SEO Expert, Blogger, Music Promoter/ Marketer, Computer Scientist.

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