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Tag - App Store
Welcome to the Game Replay, the thrice-weekly look at the wider world of gaming by the staff of MacNN. In today's edition, Apple stops The Binding of Isaac: Rebirth from reaching the App Store, Fixaris adds support for the Steam Controller to XCOM 2 but not other game controllers, a piracy group claims it will abstain from cracking single-player games for one year, and Steam holds yet another sale.
On Thursday, the Omni Group will release a new major version of OmniPlan for iOS, version 3, which brings many of the features of the current Mac version to the mobile platform. The new version will debut at 10AM Pacific TIme on the iOS App Store, and will be one of the more expensive major iOS apps at $75 for the regular version, with the Pro version as an additional $75 in-app purchase. The current standard and pro versions, still available at the time of this report, cost $50 and $100 respectively, and will include a free upgrade to version 3.0.
On Thursday, Apple updated its iOS App Store to offer a special sale on productivity apps, taking 50 percent off highly-rated programs such as to-do list Clear, package tracker Deliveries, and a utility that turns an iPad into a wired second monitor for a Mac called Duet Display. Corresponding Mac versions of the apps are on sale as well, such as task manager Things. The sale, which is expected to last for a week, is a repeat of an earlier promotion along similar lines called "Get Productive."
Apple is going to open its first iOS App Development Center in Europe, in an attempt to teach more potential developers how to create apps for the mobile operating system. The initial facility will be created with an unnamed partner institution in Naples, Italy, complete with support teachers and a specialized curriculum to prepare "thousands of future developers to be part of Apple's thriving developer community.
The gaming segment in Apple's App Store enjoyed an expected expansion for the month of December, with analysts claiming downloads in the store increased by more than 20 percent compared to November. Figures from Sensor Tower's Store Intelligence service claims there was a month-on-month increase of almost 104 million game installations, in turn increasing game revenue from $847 million in November to almost $1 billion in December.
A third-party app store that was recently discovered to offer apps to iOS users without jailbreaking their devices beforehand is still in operation. The rogue store, vShare, is using the known enterprise certificate abuse exploit to provide downloads for its own app catalog, using a technique researchers have termed the "DarkSideLoader." As the apps are not provided or vetted through Apple, the downloaded apps are a security risk for unsuspecting users.
The Starbucks iOS app available in the Canadian App Store can now be reloaded using Apple Pay, and the virtual card can also be added to Wallet on the iPhone 6 or later, including the Apple Watch. Users in Canada can simply open the app and use the Reload button, choosing Apple Pay as the method of payment. Presently, Canadians must use either an Amex card or a US-based card that is supported by Apple Pay to take advantage of the feature, but the Starbucks virtual card itself can be loaded into Wallet or used directly from the app to pay in stores, using a barcode reader.
Apple is said to be making it easier for Russian iPhone users to be able to buy content from its online stores, by expanding carrier billing to the country. A report claims Apple is working with one mobile phone company to enable Carrier Billing, which allows for iTunes and App Store purchases to be charged directly to a mobile phone account, instead of requiring the use of a credit card or other standard payment method.
Apple's latest addition to the App Store family, the Apple TV App Store, is growing again. On Tuesday, the company added five new categories to the store, including Games, Education, Entertainment, Health & Fitness, Lifestyle, News, and Sports. The entire concept of categories in the store are new as of the beginning of this month, and are organized in the same manner as similar categories in the App Store or Mac App Store.
Developers over the last week have reported that the algorithm that powers App Store searches is evolving, now offering suggestions that go beyond simple title or keyword identification. The biggest changes appear to have debuted on November 12, but tweaks and other noticeable (to developers) differences in results have been happening all during November, and are continuing. The overall effect appears to be that searches are more intelligent, with for example "Tweetbot" turning up in a search for "Twitter" when it didn't previously.