If you’ve ever used Paypal as your payment method for the App Store / iTunes you may have noticed that Apple seems to have quite a serious vendetta going against Paypal. I’ve used Paypal as my payment method since the very beginning of the App Store and several times over the years the iTunes Store has hit me with messages and roadblocks suggesting that Paypal was ‘not an accepted payment method’.
Well, I’m here to tell you that is nonsense. Paypal has always been an accepted method and it still is now.
This morning I had one of these occasions where the App Store got its knickers in a twist – apparently because there was some issue with payment for an In-App purchase I made recently. For some reason the payment did not clear successfully with Paypal. My balance in Paypal is always far larger than needed to cover any iTunes purchases – so I imagine on that particular day the App Store was just unable to hit the Paypal authorization server or some such circumstance. In any case, I never received any sort of notification of a failed purchase at all – from the ITunes store or Paypal.
It looks like Apple has now fixed the issue with the blank Updates page in the iPad App Store. As of late last night, app updates are showing up fine again on my iPad mini.
I’ve also heard from several users this morning via comments, email, and Twitter that updates are showing up properly on their iPads too.
Are you all seeing the same? Let us know in the comments.
For the last several days many iPad users have been seeing a blank Updates page in the App Store, while the App Store app icon shows there are updates available.
There are numerous threads about this on the Apple Support Community pages. So far the best, and still quite clumsy, workaround is to go to the Purchased tab in the App Store and scroll through and install your updates from there. This works for me on my iPad, though it’s a pain in the neck to do because even the All tab under Purchased only shows about 50 apps, while I have over 200 installed and well over 1,000 purchased total. So I have to use the alphabetical listing on the left of the Purchased page and go through letter by letter.
This morning I spoke to Apple Support about this issue and was told the following:
– Apple is aware of the issue and says it has been a problem for at least the last 3-4 days.
– It is only affecting the iPad.
– Apple is working on resolving the issue, but there’s no ETA as yet for when it may be fixed and of course no system status type page where users can check on progress or see when the issue is resolved.
One of the featured app collections in the iPad App Store this week is titled ‘Fun Summer Learning for Kids’. That may be a sight for sore eyes for many students and parents as the hot summer rolls on.
The collection highlights 30 apps that should prove engaging for kids of all age groups. Many are aimed at quite young ages, while others are more suitable for older elementary school students.
There’s everything from fun little coloring and numbers games to the Hopscotch visual programming app. I’m happy to see that my family owns about 1/3 of these apps and several of them have already got a lot of good use by my 10 year old daughter.
It’s great to see Apple featuring one sort of educational app collection or another so often in the App Store recently.
You’ll find the Fun Summer Learning for Kids collection among the rotating featured sections in the Featured tab of the iPad App Store.
One of the featured app collections in the App Store this week is titled ‘Father’s Day Gift Guide’. So if you’ve got a dad in your life who’s partial to a great iPad app you may want to give it a look and get some inspiration.
The collection has 8 sections: Gifts for Music Lovers, Gifts for Photographers, Gifts to Get Stuff Done, Gifts for Foodies, Gifts for Casual Gamers, Gifts for Hardcore Gamers, Apps for Kids, and Games for Kids. Each section features 10 apps.
One notable thing about the collection is that it highlights a number of Apple’s own apps – including GarageBand, iPhoto, and Pages, Numbers, and Keynote.
There are plenty of good app choices in each of the sections, so this collection should offer some good ideas for all the dads out there who aren’t looking for a new pair of socks or a fancy new drill for Father’s Day.
You can find the Father’s Day Gift Guide app collection right at the top of the App Store featured section, in the rotating set of images for featured collections.
If you’re looking for inspiration in choosing an app or apps to gift a mom in your life for Mother’s Day, then you may want to check out the Mother’s day Gift Guide featured section in the iPad App Store today.
The gift guide is made up entirely of apps and includes 9 sub-sections including:
Gifts for Foodies: Cookbook and culinary apps
Gifts for Photographers: Photo and video editing and effects apps
Gifts that Wow: An odd,eclectic section with apps ranging from iMovie to Star Walk and others about the universe around us
Apps for Kids and Games for Kids: Perhaps with the idea that a good set of distracting apps for the kiddos is a nice gift to help Mom get some relaxation in on Mother’s Day?
Gifts for Gamers and Gifts for Hardcore Gamers: For all the Gamer Moms.
It’s a good looking collection, with a lot of range to it. Even so, I ‘d say it’d be a good idea to make sure you’ve got some other gifts in store for the important mom/s in your life tomorrow – not *only* an app.
You can find the Mother’s Day Gift Guide in the Featured section of the App Store this week, right at the top among the rotating showcase app collections.
Apple Is Trying to Make Users More Aware of the Pitfalls of In-App Purchases
This week the iPad App Store has added a new section to help users understand In-App Purchases. The section is called Learn More About In-App Purchases and it’s included in the iPad App Store Featured area, in the section just below What’s Hot.
The new section provides a good, concise overview of In-App purchase, the different types of In-App purchases and how they work, and how to setup parental controls to disable the ability to make use of them.
Just a few weeks ago Apple made the ‘warning’ symbol for apps that contain In-App purchase options more prominent. It’s good to see their continuing efforts to raise awareness on this subject and try to avoid some of the sad stories we see so often where kids unwittingly rack up huge credit card bills for unsuspecting parents.
Last week Apple made some minor adjustments to the layout of iPad and iOS App Store pages. One of the more notable changes is in the way that age ratings for apps are presented – they’ve been made a little more prominent.
Age rating details are now displayed much higher up on the App Store window for individual apps – just below the app title and developer name. This follows closely on another recent update that made it easier to see which apps offer In-App purchases.
Now both of these bits of information – age rating and the indicator for apps with In-App purchase – are right up in the top section of the app window.
These changes should be good news for many iPad and iOS App Store users, and especially for parents.
After a number of recent headline stories about young children racking up huge bills with In-App purchases and Apple having to settle a class action lawsuit by parents relating to the iOS ‘freemium’ model. the iOS App Store now shows a sort of warning label on apps that offer In-App purchases.
For now, it’s a pretty innocuous little label just below the category and rating listing for an app in the iPad App Store. I think it could do with being a little more prominent, and perhaps even include the word ‘warning’ in front of it – or have a small symbol to indicate that it is a warning.
What do you all think? Is this label sufficient to make parents and kids aware or should the label be clearer?
It looks like the iOS 6.1 update has fixed the longstanding problem with the App Store Purchased section not loading. As I posted about recently this issue was affecting numerous users and was a known issue that Apple’s engineering team has been working on.
After the iOS 6.1 update I can once again load the Purchased section in the App Store on my iPad 3 and iPad mini. I can get both tabs of the section to load too – the All tab and ‘Not on This iPad’.
It still takes quite a while to load each page (a minute or more) and sometimes switching between tabs will make the App Store app crash back to the home screen – but most of the time it is working OK for me.
For those of you who were seeing this problem before, what are your results when trying this after the iOS 6.1 update?
We’re only 8 days away from what looks like a great Super Bowl XLVII. And the iPad App Store is featuring Super Bowl apps and games this week.
The selection of apps and games for this Super Bowl focused section is not huge. There are only 10 selections – 5 apps and 5 games – but it’s a good selection. It includes a couple of official NFL apps (one that’s a guide to this year’s game) and some fun games. NFL Quarterback is a particular favorite of mine.
You can check out this new topical section by opening the App Store and going to the Featured area – it’s one of the rotated featured sections at the top of this page.
Have you got any favorite NFL related iPad apps or games?