04-29-2011 10:59 PM
04-30-2011 01:07 AM
I hate to say it but I have to agree. AppWorld as it is now is a joke. It's completely messed up. I just posted about my own issues:
Seriously, RIM, what's up with the ABSURD caching on everything? You people are enterprise grade. You can do better. Add a few servers or something.
05-02-2011 04:36 PM - edited 05-02-2011 04:44 PM
RIM is extremely busy lately with a ton (probably at least hundreds, maybe thousands) of apps submitted prior to the free PlayBook deadline. I am sure they are working as dilligently as they can. Be patient and if you don't get something back within a week or so then put in a ticket.
I myself submitted an app and have heard nothing yet in 10 business days. I am sure they will get to it soon. :-)
Just try not to flame them so bad. mmmmk?
Take a look at this post about RIM cache servers and a possible explanation for your issues.
05-04-2011 12:59 PM
I don't think it's flaming them if they're failing to keep up their side of the bargain with a promotion they had going on for MONTHS. When you have a promotion designed to draw in developers to make apps for your platform and then the process of getting those apps published fails miserably, what does that tell you?
At any point throughout, during the probably hundreds of submissions PRIOR to the deadline someone could have thought "huh, if we're busy now, we might be busier as we get closer to the deadline". You pick up the phone, you call a temp agency, and you bring in a dozen employees to work for a few weeks...if you need to you keep some if you stay busy because of consistent work. This isn't rocket science.
I submitted a trouble ticket probably a month ago and I never even got a follow up. My problem got resolved through a RIM employee on the forums.
It's been almost a month since "ordering" my free playbook and it still hasn't been shipped. I've even got ideas for other apps but I'm completely stopping further development until I get the PlayBook because I want to see how my app is actually running on the real thing because the simulator doesn't simulate too well in my opinion.
RIM got my attention thanks to that promotion, now they have to keep it. I'm debating on going to buy an Android tablet and just developing on that platform because I'm not impressed. I can appreciate that the employees are doing the best they can but this is a managment failure. They didn't prepare properly for this and they aren't handling any of this well.
RIM is a business, I am a business, and not to be empathetic but perhaps leaving the platform needs to be just that as well...just business. If you have a mechanic that says he'll have your car fixed in two days and two weeks later he's not answering the phone and responding to voicemails, what would you do? You'd go to another mechanic next time.
This is serious issue and, from what I can tell, RIM isn't taking it seriously. They're working with big names to push projects through like facebook and angry birds but letting the little guys down.
05-09-2011 11:57 AM - edited 05-09-2011 12:21 PM
Issues go on for years, such as the static Try & Buy that has been broken from the beginning.
Updates of descriptions & screenshots can take weeks to be approved, then fail to appear for days, or never unless the customer uninstalls and reinstalls App World; the old ones are held in some cache that never updates.
Many times customers are still getting old versions, and also it will send out an old file bundle with a new version number, so it looks like the new version is on the phone, but it's some old version.
Users have received update notifications, then it uninstalled the app and asked them to pay again. Or notified them of an update, then said app unavailable. Or "updated" them to an older version than they already had.
Also, it may send out Trial versions to paying customers, but with the full version's number; or will send full versions out free as trials.
In view of all this plus that the Playbook and, presumably, some future BB phone OS will be able to run Android apps, and in view of the fact that the current BB OS is being phased out, the question I'm asking is, why continue developing BlackBerry apps at all? Why not just develop Android apps, enjoy selling to a larger and growing market rather than a smaller shrinking market, and soon those apps will work on the new BlackBerry platform too?
Really, I'm sitting here wondering why I'm developing for 25% of the market rather than 35% that will probably become 70% over the next couple of years as Android grows and BlackBerry starts emulating Android.
edit: Oh, forgot to mention prices. I changed some prices several days ago, it shows the new price in the listing, but is still charging the old prices. This also makes you look like a scam artist if you lower a price, because it raises the price after they click on it, then changes it in the listing too.
And if you unpublish an app, it still shows in listings for a day or more, they click, it asks them to log in, then says the app is not available.
Don't plan on publishing a lot of apps, either, because the Vendor Portal keeps sending you back to page 1 every time you leave a detail page. This is wasted time if not carpal tunnel when you have to go through EVERY SINGLE RELEASE for EVERY SINGLE PRODUCT every time they add another device to the 50 already out there.
That's this afternoon's project, they added a new model yesterday, I modified releases, and then they added another model today, so I have to go through and modify the releases again.
Generally, just a mess, and worse since Apple and Android make it look so easy.
Android is fragmented lbecause it's got many manufacturers. RIM has severely fragmented a platform just as badly, when it's just 1 manufacturer. Every possible combination of click screen, non-click screen, non-touch screen, keyboard, no keyboard, sliding keyboard, trackball, trackpad, trackpad and touch, touch without trackpad, 2 convenience keys, 1 convenience key, OpenGL, no OpenGL, fast processor, turtle processor, OS 4.6, OS 5.0, 6.0, 7.0, Tablet OS, all being distributed on new devices. Then wonder why you have less apps than Apple or Android? Because we waste so much time keeping up with all the changes and hardware combinations. Wonder why you have inferior apps? We have to write for compatibility with things like the Pearl, Style, and "Bold" 9650 which is even slower than the 8330.
05-09-2011 08:03 PM - edited 05-09-2011 08:10 PM
Wow. I had no idea it was this bad. Like a lot of folks, I was enticed to look at App World because of the "free" PlayBook offer. I don't have any experience yet as an App World vendor, and this is not encouraging.
Thanks @silver20 for calling out App World on specific tangible issues. Folks when you lay it out like this, it's not whining. It's calling a trainwreck a trainwreck.
Edit: BTW from what I've seen on other platforms, users tend to blame the dev first, for everything, including stuff completely out of their control. The App World issues that @silver20 describes sound like a nightmare for developer reputations.
05-09-2011 09:07 PM
I've been writing code for a living for more than 3 decades. From mainframes to minis to micros to handhelds to everything in between. Bugs are a fact of life. There are any number of ways and means for problems to crop up. Some created by us as developers, some environmental, some caused by hardware failures, some by host software failures, some by lack of testing facilities ... you get the picture.
On every platform I've worked on in all that time, when you get to the point of identifying that problem, and fixing it, there has been a reasonable procedure for deploying that fix. Even with the bureaucracy imposed by Quality Assurance in a big corporation or government agency (QA being the thing we all love to hate, but a necessary thing), it has been possible to deploy fixes in a timely and (usually) orderly fashion.
BlackBerry App World, particularly for the new PlayBook, is radically different from anything I've seen before. Even considering that there are growing pains, partly caused by the "Free Hardware" program, the experience of getting new as well as updated software into App World for actual deployment has been anything but a pleasurable experience.
I've just never seen an environment where, having produced a fix for a problem, you wait literally for days growing into weeks, with no feedback as to what is going on, for your fix to actually reach your customer. There's no time estimate (aside from the speculation provided by fellow developers in the same boat), no acknowledgement of progress, you just .................................... wait. And hope.
And then you get that word that your submission has been approved. And again you wait. It either doesn't show up in App World, or it takes one or more days, bits and pieces show up, maybe a star rating from a review but not the review itself, maybe a description that is out of sync with the update, maybe, maybe, maybe.
Is this progress?
05-09-2011 09:34 PM - edited 05-09-2011 09:39 PM
They seem to have an obsession with caches. How about bandwidth instead? Even with cheapskate bandwidth, it shouldn't take days to update caches when there isn't even anything big to update, just a flag (is it published or not?), or a description. It's also not like most BlackBerry apps are so big, most of mine are about 50k. Isn't there also a way to send something out designated for multiple IP addresses, without the main server having to send separately to each? I don't understand why it should be a problem to update something in the system.
Does anyone understand this? I'm not a network expert obviously, but why all these levels of caches that update once a day at best, instead of a large, fast central server with high bandwidth? I can start an internet file transfer anywhere in the world and a 50k file comes through right away in most cases. Or go to any website, anywhere in the world, and a 50k page loads fast enough even where there's no local cache. So what's up with the 4 levels of caches, and caches that never update or resist updating?
They told me for price changes, if it doesn't update, to toggle the price back and forth to signal the cache that it must update, and then after midnight the next night it should update. Sometimes that works, sometimes it takes a few days or even has taken a week to update despite being toggled back and forth every day (i.e. switch it down a dollar, then back up a dollar right away, just to set the "needs updating" flag but the value is the same). Meanwhile customers keep seeing it for a dollar less in the listing, they click, and then the price goes up.
To me the most appalling problems are sending out an old version numbered like it's the new version, even in Options/Applications and the download report (why send out an older version in the first place, but at least call it what it is), and sending out trial versions to paying customers or full versions to trial downloaders.
Something I've just started doing is, after an update gets approved (or even when it's submitted), send in a support request asking them to Deny all the previous releases, to ensure that no-one will get an old version.
05-09-2011 11:30 PM