Is Apple's App Store mediation a good move?

Josh Chandler · August 15, 2009 · Short URL: https://vator.tv/n/9fd

According to reports Phil Schiller, Senior VP at Apple is helping to approve applications!

Picture of Phillip W. Schiller, Senior VP at ApplePhil Schiller, senior vice president of Apple has become the "go-to guy" for all application approvals for the iPhone App Store, according to reports from Techcrunch and TUAW. But just how much benefit does Apple gain from becoming the "mediating party" on application approval in the iPhone app store?

It's certainly an interesting tale of one application called Rising Card made by Theory11, a "strategic alliance under one goal, one mission, and one objective: to advance the art of magic."  This application had supposedly been sitting in the approval queue for over a month (the app having been completed a month and a half ago). As of 11th August when The Unofficial Apple Weblog had reported this occurrence it was still waiting to be approved.

After the news article was published Apple's senior VP Phil Schiller and Phil Shoemaker, Apple’s Director of Application Technology started "reaching out to the developers" according to Techcrunch.com, and subsequently got the application approved and in the iPhone App store on August 14th.

Now, this is "nice, quick and easy" good PR for Apple, after many applications including  the official provider of much of the functionality in the iPhone Google had it's Google Voice Application rejected (which is now being investigated by the Federal Communications Commission), but just how will iPhone users really react to a "softer side" of Apple, and how long do we really expect this to continue.

When companies enter the digital age, they want certain necessities as part of their marketing, and communications arsenal, one of those is a web service called Twitter.com, a popular micro-messaging service which allows users to send 140 character updates to followers of their updates.

Now Apple has been widely criticized for not taking part in social media and not "getting it" as mentioned by Andy Beal of Marketing Pilgrim. It is true that Apple as a company have a sterling reputation behind them (33 years to be precise), but at the same time they have undoubtedly been paying very close attention to how companies such as Jetblue and the PR on Twitter are turned around in an instant by using Twitter to update, and sort out any issues quicker then email.

If this is perhaps stage one of Apple's acceptance of it's mistake to not move into social media, then I think on the whole they have been slow and unresponsive. Overall the fact of the matter is they have established communication with developers of an application because of a blog post, which is quite significant for Apple.

However, I do believe relating largely to my former question at the beginning of this article that perhaps the "human side" of Apple coming out to us as it did will perhaps take many by surprise, I for one was glad to see Apple taking the wrap for it's mistake, but wonder how much Apple is willing to give (especially, if it's only looking for some "amazing" surge of applications being submitted in return).

On the other hand, I don't believe that Apple is that shallow, and have certainly taken a positive move to addressing an issue which could have become an uncontrollable mess in the Twittersphere, and the blogsphere, but as I said beforehand Apple has a great relationship with it's customers, which existed long before social media arrived.

But, what should Apple's next move be to approaching the entire social media space, rather then just blogs?

Image Source:  Apple PR

Read more from our "Trends and news" series

More episodes

Related Companies, Investors, and Entrepreneurs

Smule

Startup/Business

Joined Vator on

Smule develops interactive sonic applications for the iPhone and other technology platforms.   Smule is developing the new sonic network, connecting users across the globe through expressive audio.  Smule's Ocarina, I Am T-Pain, and Leaf Trombone have set the standard for iPhone applications, combining innovative uses of the hardware with compelling social experiences. 

Mojos Mobile

Startup/Business

Joined Vator on

Mojos Mobile is a global operating Content Developer, Aggregator, Provider and Publisher. Founded by experienced professionals in the mobile industry Mojos Mobile offers an extensive portfolio of branded and non-branded content, covering thousands of items for use on mobile phones. The range covers high quality games and outstanding software solutions.

Our main customers are the leading International Operators, Resellers and Content Channels.

GeoGraffiti

Startup/Business

Joined Vator on

GeoGraffiti is a free verbal publishing platform for ‘marking’ local places with informative voice messages. GeoGraffiti Voice Marks and Biz Marks are short phone recordings, made public and geotagged to a real-world place so other mobile phone callers can hear and benefit from public opinion or business promos while on location when the information is most pertinent. 

 

GeoGraffiti is carrier-agnostic and you don't need any fancy equipment.  Our platform can be accessed via standard telephone, web, iphone, android, and google earth.  We have automated Twitter integration to let all your followers know when you create a new Voice Mark. 

Pageonce

Startup/Business

Joined Vator on

Pageonce is the first mobile company that allows users to access, view and manage all of their personal online accounts in a single secure application. Pageonce provides anytime, anywhere account access via iPhone and BlackBerry. With access to thousands of providers across banking, finance, credit cards, investments, utilities, airlines, hotels, ecommerce sites and more, users enjoy access to detailed transaction history and account activity and receive alerts when key changes occur in any of their accounts. 

Tapulous, Inc.

Startup/Business

Joined Vator on

Tapulous is a Palo Alto, CA based startup building a family of fun and social apps for the iPhone.  We are angel funded and have released two apps for the iPhone (as of early August, 2008): Tap Tap Revenge (a music game) and Twinkle (the app that lets you connect with people nearby and your friends on Twitter).