Apple’s Misleading App Store Metrics

Inside Mobile Apps:

It’s remarkable how widely-known the phenomenon of fraudulent download bots was throughout the iOS developer community. Essentially, bots or automated programs have been used for well over a year to download apps until they reach the top of the charts where they can be seen by real users. [...] It’s absurd to think about how long Apple must have known about and tolerated this practice.

Ha. I don’t think it’s absurd that they’ve tolerated it, considering how much they tout the number of downloads in their app store regularly. And here’s something interesting:

In comparison, Google Android Market’s charts are more immune to bots because the company’s ranking algorithm is more holistic and incorporates factors like whether users keep their apps installed.

Now there’s a metric. Who cares how many people download your app – it’s about who’s using it in the first place.

But there’s something that bothers me even more about all of this. Steve Jobs, during one of his famous keynotes, accused Google of lying about their Android activation numbers and said they’re “only updates” – something that was quickly proven wrong by Google. Jobs did this while knowing very well that Apple’s metric for app downloads was wrong and followed up his accusation lying about his own App Store’s downloads.

Yeah. Oops.

Post link via David Sehllabarger.

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