Top 10 App Store Rejections Reasons and How To Deal With Them

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Kevin Ford

August 10th, 2011

Ask any iOS developer and they’ll tell you that it’s bound to happen at some point, receiving the dreaded app storerejection email. And when it does, it may feel like a slap in the face.

Receiving your first app store rejection can be a very frustrating experience, mainly due to the vague reasoning behind it. If you’ve just received one, remember to stay calm and carefully assess the situation. The last thing you want to do is fuel the Apple fury.

There are literally tons of reasons behind Apple’s rejection of any iOS app. However, this list will provide a little insight into 10 of the most common ones.

Bugs – Bugs are one of the main reasons for apps to be rejected from the app store, right off the bat. If the app crashes or doesn’t respond during review testing, a rejection email from the app review team is almost inevitable.

Human Interface Guidelines (HIG) – iPhone developers need to follow each and every point of Apple’s Human Interface Guidelines precisely. If you’re taking your first steps as a developer, make sure to read their HIG guidelines first. It will save you a lot of headaches down the road.

Identical Icons – Two sets of icon sizes need to be supplied to Apple 512×512 and 57×57. These icon need to be identical. Not following the exact measurements leads to violation of HIG which may be grounds for an  iPhone app rejection.

Internet Connectivity – If your app needs internet connectivity to work and it’s not available, then a message should be displayed to the user. Simply displaying a loading icon and keeping them waiting when no connectivity is available will lead to a rejection. Apple always tests apps under no connectivity conditions so iPhone developers must avoid taking a chance on the App Store.

Device Capabilities – Testing is essential, especially across various iOS devices. There are slight differences on the iPod, iPhone and iPad so make sure you’re not missing any specific compatibility issues with one of the devices.

Excessive Bandwidth Usage – If the app downloads data from the cellular network; iPhone developers should make sure that the app is not downloading too much data.  Apple doesn’t mention the exact count but downloading rate should be low, may be around 4.5 meg of data per 5 minutes of activity.

Button Image Consistency – Creating your own set of custom buttons is always a good idea, however if you want to use Apple’s existing images as your app’s buttons then make sure they’re used in the standard way they were intended for. Misuse of images and button consistency will lead to a rejection.

Lite Versions – When it comes to Lite versions of apps, the rules are very vague. One thing’s for sure, apps may be rejected if the app contains buttons that are disabled or don’t function due to the app being a Lite version. The best course of action create an app with In-App purchase functions and highlight the fact that your app offers IAP upgrades.

OS Compatibility – As an iPhone developer you should be very particular about your claims on OS compatibility. If you claim that the app is suitable for a particular version of OS and higher versions then app should work perfectly on all versions, or else your app will get rejected.

False Claim of missing network – iPhone developers should make sure that they don’t give any false positive feedback in network detection. Again, this goes with any previous false or misleading claims mentioned above.

In Conclusion: Way before marketing and user engagement, the major hurdle to an app’s success may come very early on in the form for an app rejection. If it does, refer to this post as your guide and try to rectify the issue.

Have any of your apps been rejected? Let us know what you did about it. Share your comments below or reach us via Twitter @nativeX.

Kevin Ford

Marketing Manager


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