Apple is putting a stop to app developers from endlessly spamming their users with review requests.
We’ve all been there; you download an app, use it regularly, and find yourself frequently prompted to write an App Store review. It’s one of the most egregious things an app developer can do, but Apple now plans massively restrain the review prompt system to help protect users.
The new App Review guidelines compel developers to use the official in-app rating UI that was added in iOS 10.3, and plans to “disallow custom review prompts” in the future. Previously, adopting the new App Store rating API was optional, but Apple is now fulfilling its earlier pledge to eventually make it mandatory.
Developers aren’t entirely miffed about the change (first highlighted by 9to5mac), because the API allows for submitting app reviews without having to leave the app. That was previously one of the biggest drawbacks of submitting an app review.
But Apple is also limiting the number of times that the rating prompt can be pushed to users. A user can only receive the prompt three times per year. And if a user leaves a rating, that user won’t receive another prompt for at least a year – and only if a new version of the app has been released.
However, there’s an obvious failing with this system. If an app pushes an update that’s really bad and a user rates it negatively, developers won’t be able to prompt the user to write a new review once any issues have been fixed if the update falls within a year of the first review.
Interestingly, it’s also possible for users to turn off app review prompts entirely. You just need to head into Settings > iTunes & App Store > In-App Ratings & Reviews and slide the switch off.
Related: iPhone 7S
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