By Todd Bernhard on Wed, 04/23/2014
Apple has sent out notices to developers about changes in the iTunesconnect app management tool. Refinements include checkboxes for Medical/Treatment Information," "Gambling and Contests," and "Unrestricted Web Access."
Before these changes, if an app launched a web browser, it had to be labeled for higher age groups because of the content it could access. It seemed arbitrary, because the built-in Safari app could just as easily access those pages, but this new classification seems to be a happy medium. There are some additional country-specific rating tweaks as well.
The App Store is now in its sixth year and has gone from an afterthought to a thriving multibillion-dollar business. It's good to see Apple making these refinements as the App Store matures. It would be nice to see iTunes refined even further, allowing users to filter the results for just apps instead of mixing apps, songs, movies, albums, and podcasts together. For example, the Mac has an App Store app just for Mac OS apps. I would also like the ability to set a preferences for age ranges or content type, now that these new tags have been created. For example, parents might want to limit searches to apps without In-App purchases. It's not necessarily in Apple's interest, but it would be helpful.