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iOS and Android App Stores Full of Neglected Apps

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Many of the apps you find on the Apple App Store, and the Google Play Store has not been updated for a long time.


This should be apparent from a study by analysis company Pixalate. That seems to be partly in response to an announcement by Apple that it will soon be removing apps that the developers have not updated for several months. These could pose a potential security risk to users. In addition, the decision sparked resentment among smaller development studios in particular, who warned of potentially thousands of apps that could no longer be found in the App Store.

And that fear is not unfounded if we look at the study. In the five million apps analyzed on both stores, Pixalate found about one and a half million apps that had not received any new updates for two years or more. In contrast, about 1.3 million apps have been updated in the past six months.

The study also shows that it is not always the small, forgotten apps that become obsolete. For example, 16% of the apps with 1 to 10 million downloads turned out to be outdated, and even 6% of the apps with more than 100 million downloads had not been updated for two years.

By far, the sector with the most outdated apps turned out to be games, although we have to say that perhaps not everyone is waiting for constant updates for an offline puzzle game. In addition, education apps and reference apps were also updated more slowly. However, sectors that did respond quickly were apps around shopping, finance and health, not coincidentally types of apps where rapid changes and security are important.

Developers of such an outdated app should get back to work quickly. Apple will send a warning to makers of apps that have not been updated for three years. They then have 90 days to adjust the app. After that, those apps will remain on the smartphones of users who have already downloaded them.

Google is also working on a similar procedure, whereby it will remove or block outdated apps from the store from the end of this year. The tech giant relies on the version of Android and does not let users download apps for a version that is older than the one they run.

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