App updateritis reasons

Why do you have to update some apps every week — or maybe even more often?

There are good reasons for updating an app:

  • Adaptation to a new operating system version
  • Programming bug needs to be fixed
  • new features improve the app

and bad reasons:

  • the user should simply be made aware of the app again
  • you want to avoid the impression that the app is not maintained
  • one hopes to improve various rankings with apparently many updates

The good reasons might justify up to four updates a year. Significantly more frequent updates are a strong indication of “placebo” updates. The YouTube app in particular wants to be updated every week as punctually as possible. There's only one problem. The update message should also state what the update is good for. While many manufacturers settle for boring banalities like "general stability and performance improvements," YouTube seems to put a little more effort into justifying it. You can't really object to garbage disposal or space-time continuum corrections. But alas, if you take a closer look at the update history, there are only four standard reasons, which are presumably selected with a random algorithm:

There is only one thing you can really rely on: the app gets bigger with every update, even if nothing has actually changed or even improved. I suspect the rubbish is not taken down at all but disposed of in the app.

Published: 14.11.2018
Categories: Digital

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