Each year, the tech world waits to see what Apple will bring to its new iPhone devices. Traditionally, new devices are announced in September, such as during 2019’s “By Innovation Only” event revealing the iPhone 11. However, the next release may be delayed.
What impact does the release of a new iPhone have on ASO, and how will this delay impact apps and their optimization?
This year’s new iPhone announcement, ostensibly for the iPhone 12, will be pushed back until October, or even November. During Apple’s Q3 earnings call, Apple CFO Luca Maestri stated:
“As you know, last year we started selling iPhones in late September. This year, we expect supply to be available a few weeks later.”
While “a few weeks later” is a vague range, it does let us know that Apple is planning on announcing new devices, but they will not be released around the usual time. It is likely that they will still be released in time for the holiday season, to avoid hurting Q4 profits.
Industry buzz suggests that Apple is planning on releasing four iPhone 12 models with different screen sizes and cameras. They’re also expected to be delivered with iOS 14 and feature 5G connectivity.
Apple has pushed back the release of new iPhones in the past. The iPhone X, for instance, was announced in September 2017 but was not released until November. These delays are not unheard of, but rarely announced before the device itself is shown.
What the statement did not mention was whether or not this would delay the usual event where the new phones are announced. These events typically include announcements for new iPhone, iPad and Apple Watch devices, as well as new features or services such as Apple Arcade.
Given how past delays have not resulted in postponed announcements and the events include announcements for additional devices, it is still likely that we will see the iPhone 12 series announced in September. Even if the actual release date is pushed back, the devices are still underway.
Impact on ASO
The question, then, is what impact this delay will have on App Store Optimization. Will the disruption to the release schedule have a negative impact on apps?
App developers need to be aware of what new changes are coming to the phones in order to prepare their apps for any required updates, including resizing screenshots for new screen sizes. While a delayed release may provide them with more time for the updates, delayed announcements can leave them scrambling to catch up.
New phones mean new users. This presents opportunities for app developers to reach more customers as people receive new phones and search for apps. A delayed release may mean it will take longer for users to get new devices, but historical data from past delays shows it has little impact on app sales as long as the phone is released before holiday shopping starts.
What Developers Should Do
What’s important is that developers are aware of the new device and can update their apps for it. This will include ensuring it’s updated for iOS 14, so users can access it on their new devices. The app should also be tested to ensure it fits the screen and runs properly.
When the new phone does launch, app developers need to be sure their App Store listings are optimized for them. Ensure the screenshots are up to date and there are sets designed for the phones’ dimensions and the visuals all have proper definition.
It’s essential that app developers stay informed about upcoming releases and update their store listings accordingly. This will help keep their App Store Optimization up to date with every change.
Want to learn more about App Store Optimization? Contact Gummicube and we’ll help get your strategy started.