My app has been on the App Store for 42 days now, and has sold around 40 copies. That’s nothing stellar—it’s not even breaking even—but it’s something.
A few weeks ago, I received my first four-star review. At first, it seemed like a bit of a slap in the face, but now I feel considerably different about it.
Receiving a four-star review means that the reviewer really gave it some thought. I like to think that he or she dug in and tried all the features, envisioned using it during actual gameplay (or actually did use it during gameplay), and then decided that it wasn’t the be-all and end-all application for tracking initiative that it could be. But it was close. This is the kind of review I can appreciate.
We’re constantly reviewing things: meals, customer service, books, music, clothes, road maintenance, and so on. In our minds, we approach this task with a great deal of nuance, breaking down the object or experience into any number of facets, assigning them importance, working out the interplay of different elements, and arriving at an impression of some sort, which we dutifully file away for future reference. When we’re asked to distill all that detail into a single number between one and five, the vast majority of us either ignore the opportunity or turn the in-depth mental review into one of two extremes: One or five. We’re prepared to either laud or excoriate something in such a situation because the feelings that drive those responses are the ones that are most likely to provoke action.
With this in mind, then, it’s nice to see that somebody likes the app enough to give it an above-average score without giving it a 5-star review, which (to my mind) should be reserved for the finest of applications, the paragons of their kind. I wouldn’t mind being credited with writing an app that deserved five stars, but PFTools is not it.
Related: I had an opportunity last weekend to actually put my app to the test while running a game. I probably should have done so before publishing the first version, but it’s too late to worry about such details. In any case, I quickly identified several shortcomings, and have been able to fix up most of them—the low-hanging fruit, really. The next task is a big one, requiring some changes to the underlying database. It won’t be as easy, but the difference it makes to the operation of the app will be significant.