iTunes rating is for crap – its an outrage really.

what gives with these guys at apple?? They make a ton of cash off of the developers for iPhone apps, never mind the Kool-aide drinkin idiots who BUY the iphones and accessories…. so why the hell can’t they deal with a simple thing like a rating system???

I mean seriously – I’ve done em’, they’re easy.  You take the rating (1-5), save it and average it.  WOW, I’m a freakin genius.

I have 9 reviews.  7 of them are 5 star.  1 is 3 star.  The other 2 are 1 star (but one of them raved, so he basically screwed up and didn’t click 5 stars but whatever).

That’s an average of 3.8,  YET, i’m listed with a 2.5 star listing and it shows this BS chart that says I have over 200 reviews?!?!?  WTF?

I’ve tried sending apple emails over the connect portal, and of course, even that site failed with it’s rediculously cumbersome submission form.  It failed, I lost my text and information 2x’s over, and finally decided to publicly bitch about them.

I doubt I’ll hear anything back about it.  But people should at least know, they’re not spending money on keeping their stuff working.  Probably more Koolaide for the minions.

    • danny
    • April 17th, 2009

    The 9 reviews are of people who actually wrote something… 240 is all the people who rated but didn’t leave comments.

    • Aaron
    • April 18th, 2009

    You have 240 ratings and of those ratings 9 people were nice enough to write a review. That works out to a 2.74 app average.

  1. I bet that’s the review data for a totally different app.

  2. You don’t have to write a full review to rate an app. Plus, with the last iPhone update, you can rate directly on the iPhone itself when you uninstall an app. That probably accounts for all the 1s and 2s.

  3. Ratings and reviews are two different things. So 240 people used the “Rate this application” dropdown and 9 people clicked “Write a Review”. Writing a review (optionally?) includes rating the app but rating the app does not necessitate writing a review.

  4. I’m pretty sure the chart is showing ratings people leave, not reviews. Every time you uninstall an app on the iphone it asks you to quickly rate it in a popup on the phone, but not for an actual review.

    I think that’s a rediculously flawed system.. if you’re only asking people that remove an app to rate it it seems like you’re asking to skew the numbers low, unless you count every other person that’s downloaded it and not uninstalled as a 5 star rating.

    Anyway, I just wanted to point out that I think you might be looking at two different pieces of data. If you can see download stats to compare against the number of ratings then that might help figure out what’s being shown.

    • you’re right Matt, I’m looking at 2 different things – I didn’t realize the difference. The system is even MORE a pile of crap than I thought. You’re right! To have someone rate an app that they’re uninstalling?!?! Who’s the f’ing genius who that that’d be objective?? idiots.

      Thanks Matt, I feel somewhat better in knowing that it’s not just a bunch of random idiot data, and worse that it’s based on people uninstalling the app (usually).

  5. Odd because you have a 2.5 star rating, and a 4+ rating (beneath the app GET APP icon).

  6. I agree that having people rate an app when they uninstall is a weird way to approach things, but as long as it’s consistent it isn’t skewing your results versus other applications. It’s just going to trend the average rating of all applications downwards. I do understand Apple’s desire to prompt people to rate apps, versus relying on them to return to the iTunes store later on to do so.

    lee – that’s the age rating, 4+ years old. It is a little confusing I suppose.

    • It’s a suck ass way to do it if you ask me 😉 I get it, I know they want to get people to rate, but doing it at that point sucks for everyone IMHO.

      I was just frustrated because not only did it seem like the ratings didn’t make jack crap sense, I’ve been waiting over 10 days for a freaking review of my app. in the day and age of getting fixes from the creator in a matter of seconds after it’s ready, waiting 10 freaking days to push out an update/fix is taking us back to 1996. Remember calling your favorite video card manufacturer and having them send you the latest drivers via snail mail on floppies? I remember begging the mail room to NOT xray anything drom Diamond Stealth 😉

      Just seems that they are raking in plenty of cash to hire people to review apps AND make the portal better. It’s slow, offers very little in the way of contacting them, yet I’m required to give tax, financial and personal information to them along with an agreed contract. I produce the goods, yet I have no phone # to interface with them and they can’t push out updates sooner than 10 f’ing days??

      That’s completely one sided and rediculous. yes, I get it – they own the phone blah blah blah. but if you’re going to handle it HANDLE IT RIGHT and hire some people ffs.

    • Jerry
    • April 18th, 2009

    As far as I know, a star rating system is never usual average. It is calculated in a different way to avoid the problem, that something that is rated just once with 5* would be on top of something that got rated 1000 times but has “only” 4* in average.

    • Rorsach
    • May 1st, 2009

    It may be a Harmonic mean rather than an Arithmetic mean. This allows to take into account the number of people who rated as a weighting factor.

    Using the figures you supplied:
    Gives 2.67 harmonic mean.

    Harmonic mean calculator

  7. Hi,
    I didn’t notice anyone mention this but they updates to the store make a difference in ratings too. WalkJogRun’s app has 4 ratings but if you search for it on the iPhone, one page says 0 reviews and you click that to see 4 reviews. iTunes was sluggish at reflecting the count too – at first it said 2 reviews and then you click that and see 2 but then sort by most anything other than most helpful and it jumped to 4 reviews. Very peculiar. If that’s hosed, I don’t doubt the rest is. At least they let people rate the version they have so if someone doesn’t upgrade and complains about bugs, they only bring down your average on that version.

    Another fun thing is that they only generate stats of number of units sold once a night, leaving stat obsessive folks like me anxious. They also don’t show the source of your traffic so it’s impossible to be able to say “my tweeting accounted for 50% of my revenue today” or similar. Pah. I’m going to be discussing this stuff at the Apple conference next month with some contacts so hopefully we can raise our voices.


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