The App World carousel is one of the most important features in the storefront because it gives certain apps a temporary spotlight which drastically increases their downloads. A single feature can go a long way to propelling your app forward and getting some momentum. That being said, there’s a few things RIM can do with the carousel to make it better for both developers and consumers.
1. Remove the holiday branding
Although RIM might think that consumers want their holiday branding, I personally think it’s a little childish and tacky. The St Patrick’s Day holiday branding that is going on right now gives all the apps a consistent cartoon brand, which is really lame considering how much time developers might spend perfecting their logo and making their brand recognizable. Also, it seems that RIM has taken out the logo banners that say “Regional Selection” which is a way for developers to promote their app’s quality. Why RIM thinks that developers or consumers benefit from this is a little strange.
2. Stop promoting BlackBerry Messenger
It’s sort of funny how BBM gets a featured spot in the App World carousel. Not only does it take away a spot that could be given to another app, but it also doesn’t really make sense. Who has App World on their device but doesn’t know about BBM or would benefit from seeing BBM in the featured spot on the carousel. Is being featured on the device homescreen not enough?
3. Consider only promoting apps with great reviews
While it’s great to see a lot of variety in the carousel, RIM should consider a quality barrier for featuring apps. By making sure that only those apps which have been rated highly make it to the top, the overall user experience will be improved. To implement something like this, we would have to see RIM dramatically improve the app rating system with something similar to what Yelp does.
4. No need to reboot App World to see latest features
It’s odd that a company like RIM that is constantly promoting push technology, has an app storefront that makes you reset it to see the latest features. It would be cool if users got a notification that there are cool new apps in the feature carousel, or at least promoted the fact that new features usually arrive on a Friday.
RIM has a wealth of knowledge about our app downloads and preferences. Why isn’t that leveraged? If a user downloads a lot of themes, this should be encouraged with some great themes featured in the carousel. If the device sees that I’m someone in sales, the carousel could feature some great CRM apps. Also, with SXSW currently going on, App World could be featuring apps to help navigate the conference (or any conference for that matter).