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App store review process simplified

Introduction

App Store has millions of apps and they are growing in number. Apple paid a total of 100 billion U.S. dollars to iOS app developers. It’s a large market with a large number of users and App developers. If this gives you motivation to upload your app to the App Store, tag along and we will give some valuable tips and tricks to pass through the App Store review process.

Apple is an epitome of quality in terms of its product and it obviously wants to maintain that reputation with everything they do. Apple review process is very strict and they mercilessly reject any App if it doesn’t fallow certain criteria.

Having deployed many Apps into App Store and learning the hard way in some cases, we at Osmosys have compiled a set of stringent rules that help us get the approval for the Apps.  The points explained here can help you get things ready before deploying to the App Store.

At Apple, it never crashes (Mandatory)

Newton’s Apple may have crashed to the ground but things at this Apple shall never crash. Crashes are the biggest culprit for the App rejection. The App will get rejected immediately if the app reviewer notices a crash. It is therefore imperative to ensure that your App is crash free. Apple reviewers will do a detailed test of the App to ensure it is giving a feature rick and stable experience to the end user. During this test, any crash anywhere will render the App disqualified.

No testing on production

Beta Apps are NOT allowed in the App Store. Make sure any data or plugin using development API keys or showing “Lorem Ipsums” as content, should be removed or changed with production counterpart. “TestFlight” allows you to do all the beta testing needed without any reviewing but when you finally push it to App Store, it has to be the final product.

Try before buy

A lot of Apps may be connected to a web solution and require a login/password that is created on the web solution. In such cases, create a dummy account and submit those credentials so the reviewer can use them to check the App. Standalone Apps that have no third-party connection need not worry about this.

Video demonstration rocks

Video tutorial demonstration of the App can help app reviewer to understand the flow and features. Either upload a video or provide a YouTube link in the notes section. It’s recommended to keep the video duration below 3 minutes. There is no need to record a detailed explanation about the features. Just show the screens and how it works by navigating through the screens.

Screenshots like a photo shoot

It is said that the first impression is the best impression. The first thing many users notice about an App is a screenshot of the App. It helps understand its feature, usage and intuitiveness. Now the better the screenshots are, the better chances are there for App to download. It’s also mandatory to upload them along with the App. The iPhone X (1125 x 2436) is optional, iPhone (1242 x 2208) and iPad12.9 (2048 x 2732) are mandatory.

Your App is a style icon

Apple is all about great graphics and good looks. Every Icon that is on an Apple phone has to look at its impeccable best and that is what the reviewers want to see.

Icons are must for the App Store. The app has to have an icon attached to it with size 1024×1024. Make sure the app icon is not having any transparency or alpha value.

Your App description is its identity

So, you think you can describe your App with a one-liner? Give it a shot and most probably, the reviewer will reject it. A good description of the App is very important so people understand its purpose, usage and benefits. The explanation should be simple without any technology jargon and yet give a clear idea to the user on what they will be getting.

A one-line description is sure to shoot the App down by the reviewer as in most cases, it fails to convey the purpose and functionality.

Cryptography, Encryption or Decryption

If your app has encryption, it has to be highlighted in the notes section for the app reviewer. You will need to upload an export compliance document before submitting to the App Store. Click here for more details.

Android! You are not allowed

Apple is very possessive about Apple, and we cannot blame them for being so. When you develop something for Apple, show that you care and love for Apple. Avoid using other platform names in your App description, promotion or title section. Reference to Android, Windows or any other platform can surely help you getting a rejection from the reviewer.

IPv6 is the future

Whether you like IPv6 or not, it’s the default standard of iOS now. Any App that doesn’t support IPv6 will not be approved. Make sure to check your with IPv6 before applying for App Store review. Here is a quick guide to enable IPv6 from your mac.

Provided your App is worth its beans, the above ten steps help you in getting an approval from the reviewer. These do not add value to your App but ensure that an App with value doesn’t get rejected. Follow them carefully and you will have a very high chance of getting your App approved much faster.

Author: MD Aslam Ansari, Sr. Software Engineer

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