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App reviews at Apple: understaffed, filtering tons of garbage apps

Posted: , by Victor H.

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App reviews at Apple: understaffed, filtering tons of garbage apps
Apple’s mobile ecosystem is probably best known for being tightly controlled by Apple itself so no junk gets in it, and so far it has worked mostly good. But mostly isn’t good enough and many developers have complained about long review times and their apps getting released with often murky reasons.

But what about the people who have to deny those apps, have you ever thought how their work routine goes? Former senior engineer at Apple Mike Lee reveals some interesting detail about the app review guys and it turns out their job is not all that easy as it might look on the surface.

Lee who worked at Apple’s Worldwide Developer Relations team and is definitely one of the people in the know, says that the department is understaffed like many at Apple and has to go through to tons and tons of junk apps for a huge part of the day. Actually, you might have never thought that with a $100 developer fee that Apple charges for entry, app reviewers would get so many apps filled with pictures of male and female genitalia.

“It's a very serious problem, trying to filter out things that no one is there to see. Somebody has to sit there and filter out all those d*cks. You can't let all those d*cks get through. You have to err way on the side of safety. You have to have people sitting there looking at things that may or may not be d*cks all day long. Apple refuses to farm stuff out to massive groups of people. They insist on having actual smart, educated, well-trained people doing the job. So that means they have to have some of their actual employees sifting through a pile of d*cks.”
And filtering through all this garbage, it’s no wonder that sometimes a quality app can get denied as well. But with that explanation, now it’s clear why Apple is imposing its strict reviews on apps before they get into the store. To achieve this freedom from porn that we’ve heard Jobs proclaim, Appel tries to accelerate the process.

"The only way to deal with it is to set the bar so far away from d*cks so that even a picture of a cucumber gets blocked by accident," Lee explains. "Because if you don't, you have people spending hours and hours of conversation on whether something is a pubic hair. It's a huge waste of time."

source: Business Insider

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posted on 05 Jul 2012, 06:50 1

1. mercorp (Posts: 1043; Member since: 28 Jan 2012)

Now how about google play?

posted on 05 Jul 2012, 06:58 2

2. joaolx (Posts: 364; Member since: 16 Aug 2011)

Both Stores are riddled with garbage apps. But the difference is that you will find many apps doing the same thing in the play store. Both have they're problems.

posted on 05 Jul 2012, 11:57

6. Stuntman (Posts: 839; Member since: 01 Aug 2011)

I would prefer to decide which of the very similar apps I want to use instead of someone not allowing me to choose something they don't think I need. I've seen a number of apps that do pretty much the same thing, but have enough differences that make me prefer one over the others. Someone else may prefer a different app than I. Why should someone decide which one what everyone should have even if some people would have preferred a different one?

posted on 05 Jul 2012, 13:30

8. downphoenix (Posts: 3165; Member since: 19 Jun 2010)

I think they mean duplicate apps, not just apps that are very similar. There are a lot of apps on Google Play store that are just duplicates of something else.

posted on 05 Jul 2012, 07:01 2

3. Aeires (unregistered)

What about it? Apps get pulled from the Play store whenever deemed to be in violation of the regulations set forth by Google. Contrary to what some might believe, Google does police their market, just not the walled garden approach that some other markets have.

posted on 05 Jul 2012, 07:42 3

4. fraydoe (Posts: 57; Member since: 27 Dec 2011)

no! my cucumber app!

posted on 05 Jul 2012, 10:39

5. andro. (Posts: 1999; Member since: 16 Sep 2011)

Its more likely that the time delay is over apple staff having "private moments" while reviewing said "adult apps"

posted on 05 Jul 2012, 12:02

7. Stuntman (Posts: 839; Member since: 01 Aug 2011)

If I want the cucumber, I think I'm smart enough to avoid installing something I don't want. I also think that I'm mature enough to make my own decisions regarding what is acceptable on my device without someone having to censor the options I have.

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