A mostly-fresh start

Opaque Review Process

I understand the need to for an app review process. Apple doesn’t want to let broken or misbehaving apps in the store. I understand the time it takes to get to each review. It’s a popular store with thousands of updates a day. I know it takes time to have humans look at each and every one of those. Under those conditions I consider the current 4-5 days very reasonable.

What bothers me about the app store review process is the opaqueness. 5 years in, and there is still no indication of WHERE you are in line, i.e. how much longer you need to wait. When an app finally does go to In Review, there is no indication of what that process is or where your app is in the process.

90% of the time (for me anyway) reviews take less than 5 minutes. In the past I’ve gotten the Processing for App Store email before the In Review email, it goes so fast. But that other 10%, oh the 10%. That last 10% of the time reviews can take days. Why? Is there a policy question they’re checking with their supervisor about? Is the reviewer having problems logging in? Did they claim a whole bunch of apps for review off the presumably common review stack and then go home for the weekend? No idea. There is never contact from the reviewer. It’s just In Review. If it is a policy question, then why haven’t they ever contacted my to say “Hey, this is questionable”. I’d gladly change/remove whatever it is they have a problem with.

BTW: The web server logs show that no one has ever logged into the test account we provide for the reviewer(s) in the year I’ve been checking. Not once. How in depth can your review of the app get if you never get past the login screen? My last 3 day In Review time was on a 2-line x.x.1 release to fix a display bug the reviewer never looked at.