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iOS7 fails to Launch App-Store app review page
Started by ingemar Aug 26 2013 07:16 PM

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#1

ingemar

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Has anybody been able to successfully launch their app's app store review page from within iOS7?

 

I reported this to Apple way back starting with beta 1 (radar 14373701), and it got some attention as they've asked me to test after every new beta, but it's never been fixed. It's still an issue even with the latest beta.

 

This has nothing to do with Corona SDK as my Xcode apps also have this problem.

 

I use this link format (replace <my-app-id> with a valid app id):

http:// itunes.apple.com/WebObjects/MZStore.woa/wa/viewContentsUserReviews?id=<my-app-id>&pageNumber=0&sortOrdering=2&type=Purple+Software&mt=8

 

It works perfectly up to and including iOS6, but iOS7 fails to load the page.

It fails even if you try to open the link in Safari on iOS7.

 

Unless it's fixed, any buttons/menu-items from within our apps that launch the App-Store review page will not work in iOS7...



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#2

ingemar

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Has anybody tested this with iOS7?

 

In the iOS7 GM build, it's still not possible to open the App store review page from within your app.



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#3

ingemar

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Even with the official iOS7 release, none of my apps (Corona or Xcode) will launch the "review page" in the App Store app.

When tapping on the "review" button from within the app, it just launches the App Store app and displays a white blank page.



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#4

aukStudios

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I'm seeing the same issue (I was using a similar approach as your first post to get directly to the review page).

 

The best solution/workaround I've found so far is to use (replace the X's with your app store ID):

system.openURL("itms-apps://itunes.apple.com/app/idXXXXXXXXX")

 

This goes directly into the App Store (no redirects through Safari) and successfully opens the app store page for your app on both iOS 6 and iOS 7.  It doesn't go straight to the review page, unfortunately, but it's better than nothing.

 

The native.showPopup("rateApp", options) API also does seem to work and do the same thing.

 

I haven't found a way to get to directly to the review page itself on iOS 7.

 

- Andrew



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#5

Rob Miracle

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I just tested an app that I updated about a month ago and the Rate and App feature works just fine.



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#6

aukStudios

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Agreed, native.showPopup("rateApp") is working fine in iOS 7.  It opens the app's main page in the App Store.

 

ingemar and I had been trying to do something clever, where we used a special URL to open not just the app's main page in the App Store, but the Write a Review page.  It saves the user a tap or two and helps improve conversion.  But unfortunately, that trick doesn't seem to work anymore in iOS 7.

 

- Andrew



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#7

ingemar

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Thanks Andrew for reminding me of "itms-apps:"! I had ditched it (and forgotten about it) since it didn't open the review page directly.

 

As for the other approach, even though a "http:" request was used, a Safari window was never launched in-between the call to the AppStore which made this approach very smooth. I used this in my Xcode apps as well as my Corona apps.

 

At least we can now use the "itms-apps:" approach (or Corona's showPopup("rateApp")), even though the user will have to manually tap through to the app review tab...



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#8

ingemar

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Hey guys!

I just got confirmation from Apple that this issue has been fixed in iOS 7.1.

 

You can now open the review page directly instead of just the main page  :).

I've confirmed that it works on an iPod Touch 5th gen. updated to iOS 7.1



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#9

dimd

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@Ingemar, Thanks for this info, it was driving me nuts. My 'review rate' dropped drastically since the app opens the main page instead of the review page.

 

@Corona Staff, once this rolls out, will we need to rebuild and resubmit our apps for the change to take effect in existing apps, if using the native.showPopup('rateApp')?



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#10

Rob Miracle

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We don't have much more context than what has been posted here, but if they are updating the App Store app (which is what this uses), then our apps should not need to be resubmitted.   But then they may change something that would cause us to have to change something in which case an update might be needed.

 

We won't know for certain, until 7.1 comes out, but there is a good chance that you wont need to resubmit.

 

Rob



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#11

ingemar

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In order for this to work, showPopup("rateApp") needs to be modified internally to bypass the app's details page.

The current behavior only goes to the app's details page. The user will then have to navigate to the review page to write a review, and this negatively affects the number of reviews given.

 

Below is a quote from the docs and the reason for the current behavior is that other app stores do not allow bypassing the app's details page. This has never made any sense to me as the app knows which store it's connecting to and can act accordingly.

 

Passing in "rateApp" will display the "Write Review" popup window from the iTunes App Store for iOS 5 and older iOS versions. This bypasses the app details on iTunes so that the end-user can easily rate the app. On iOS 6 or any other app store, the app's details popup window will be displayed instead, just like how it is done when passing in "appStore" to this function. This is because the other app stores do not support bypassing the app details view.

 

It's always been possible to bypass the app's details page on iOS until a regression bug was introduced in iOS 7.0, and now with iOS 7.1 it's possible again.



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#12

dimd

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@Ingemar, Thanks for the details.

 

So, if i understand correctly, there are 2 reasons currently why the native.showPopup('rateApp') doesn't take the user to the review page:

1. Apple ios 7 bug that will be fixed in ios 7.1

2. Corona's 'rateApp' that sends to the info page instead of the actual review page

 

@Rob, is this something that the staff has under the radar or should we use  -- http:// itunes.apple.com/WebObjects/MZStore.woa/wa/viewContentsUserReviews?id=<my-app-id>&pageNumber=0&sortOrdering=2&type=Purple+Software&mt=8 -- for now?

 

It doesn't make sense to use the native.showPopup('rateApp') if it doesn't actually take you to the review page when another solution exists. In my experience, the fact to send the users to the info page instead of the review page converts WAY less into actual reviews.



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#13

ingemar

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I've been thinking about this some more and at the moment I've become a bit indecisive. 

 

Currently I use Corona's "rateApp" to get around the iOS 7.0 issue, but even though Apple has fixed the http-link issue in iOS 7.1, the problem is that anybody who's still on iOS 7.0 will only get a blank white page when using the http-link.

 

It could be possible to check for the iOS version and then decide what to do programmatically, but I don't think that's possible unless you have an Enterprise account.

 

Also the http-link isn't really an official way of linking to the App Store, so I'm not sure how CoronaLabs will want to handle it.



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#14

Rob Miracle

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According to what you quotes from our docs, how are you using rateApp to get around the iOS 7.0 issue?

 

I'm quite confused about this, so let me see if anyone in Engineering can shed some light on this.

 

Rob



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#15

aukStudios

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Hi Rob,

 

I thought I'd jump in and try to clarify.

 

On iOS, native.showPopup("rateApp") has always worked.  Beginning in iOS 6, it opens the app's App Store page.  The user must then make one or two taps to start actually rating the app and writing a review.

 

However, ingemar is pointing out that this isn't the best approach from a developer standpoint to get the most reviews.  The best approach would be to somehow open the app's write a review page directly, not the basic App Store listing.  This way, the user won't have to tap a few time just to start writing a review.  In iOS 5.0, 6.0, and 7.1, it was possible to open the write a review page directly not by using native.showPopup("rateApp") but by using a special URL, passed to system.openURL().  Unfortuantely, Apple (not Corona) introduced a bug in iOS 7.0 that prevented the special URL method from working.  Thus, when ingemar said he "worked around" the iOS 7.0 issue, he means that he started using native.showPopup("rateApp"), since the special URL no longer worked.

 

Now that the special URL method works again in iOS 7.1, he (and I) may go back to using it instead of native.showPopup("rateApp").  However, his question, and mine as well, is why native.showPopup("rateApp") doesn't do this for us, i.e., why doesn't it open the write a review page on iOS?  Why instead does it have to open the app's App Store page?  The rationale listed in the docs, which ingemar quoted, effectively says "well, if we can't open the write a review page directly on other platforms, then we shouldn't do it on iOS either," and both he and I think that's not a great reason.  Since the goal of native.showPopup("rateApp") is, obviously, to give the user a means to rate the app, we should make it as easy as possible, i.e., by opening the write a review page directly.  Thus we're suggesting that native.showPopup("rateApp") open the write a review page if possible (e.g., iOS 6 or 7.1, but probably not iOS 7), and if not, open the app's App Store page (iOS 7 as well as other platforms/stores).

 

- Andrew



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#16

Rob Miracle

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Thank you.  I can get this to Engineering now.

 

Rob



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#17

ingemar

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@Rob Sorry for being unclear in my previous post.

 

Andrew has explained the situation in full detail.



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#18

dorismartin24

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I have checked for this issue, but everything was fine with my applicatiions. I think its happened for particular time duration.



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#19

Appsicum

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Similar case is with me too as i am not having any such problem with me but will be eager to see what comes out as a reason.



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#20

LeivaGames

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Hello, I know this post was from a few months back and apparently IOS 7.1 Fixed the issue. But I'm a bit confused how were you able to check if IOS 7.1 Fixed the issue if the latest IOS is 7.0.6 (Correct me if i'm wrong pls) and I think IOS 7.1 Beta started early February and this post is from last year? I'm just trying to figure this out because my latest App got approved and ran into this issue. So for now best I can do is send them to my app page in the app store but not directly to the Review Tab. Any new update on this IOS7 Bug? 

 

Thanks,

Chris



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#21

ingemar

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iOS 7.1 beta 1 was released in November last year. 

 

The rumored official release date of iOS 7.1 is mid March.



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#22

dimd

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So i tested today this issue.

 

With the new ios 7.1, the ..Purple+Software.. URL works perfectly (takes the user to the review page).

However, the native.showPopup("rateApp") is still not fixed and takes the user to the app page, forcing the user to take extra steps to rate.

 

We all know how decisive are user comments (well, good ones at least) in the download/monetization process. Extra steps are really not a good option.

 

Rob, can you show this to Corona devs?

 

d.



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#23

Rob Miracle

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Engineering has asked for a bug report on this. 

 

Thanks

Rob



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#24

LeivaGames

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The 7.1 Update didn't seem to do the trick for me. It worked in previous IOS version but ever since IOS7 bug I just had to switch to opening App Page and not directly to review page. I tested as soon as update 7.1 was available and would get blank screen again with  ..Purple+Software.. so I'll just stick with opening the App Page and not review page for now. And i'm not using native.showPopup("rateApp") 



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#25

ingemar

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@LeivaGames

 

Are you sure you're using this exact format?

(where xxxxxxxx is replaced with your app's numerical id)

http://itunes.apple.com/WebObjects/MZStore.woa/wa/viewContentsUserReviews?id=xxxxxxxx&pageNumber=0&sortOrdering=2&type=Purple+Software&mt=8 

 

I've tested it on iPhone / iPad and iPod with iOS 7.1 and it works perfectly.

 

 




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