ASO Weekly: The End of TikTok?, Google Play Logo & iOS 16 Beta

July 8, 2022

ASO Weekly: The End of TikTok?, Google Play Logo & iOS 16 Beta

Welcome to this week’s ASO Weekly – Gummicube’s recurring segment where we discuss some of the biggest events in the mobile app industry, app store developments, and how they may affect your App Store Optimization strategy.

This week, we’ll be exploring:

  • Looming regulation over TikTok
  • The Google Play logo change
  • iOS 16 beta for public – what we know

Stop The Scroll – Is it the End of TikTok As We Know It?

The calls for a probe of the massively popular social media app, TikTok are widening. The short-form video platform has been touted as a wolf in “sheep’s clothing” by an FCC Commission official. TikTok is the most downloaded social media app in the world, with a higher user time spent on the app than any other direct competitor. But what’s the fuss?

To the user, TikTok is a light-hearted app with tailored content, but many are now citing security issues that may pose a danger to users' privacy. This isn’t the first time the Beijing-based company ByteDance came under scrutiny.

In 2020, the company agreed that the US operative staff could house US user data on US-based security systems, but a recent report from BuzzFeed revealed that the company can still easily access US user data.

In a rhetorical statement issued from TikTok, their report stated that:

“Like many global companies, TikTok has engineering teams around the world. We employ access controls like encryption and security monitoring to secure user data, and the access approval process is overseen by our US-based security team. TikTok has consistently maintained that our engineers in locations outside of the US, including China, can be granted access to U.S. user data on an as-needed basis under those strict controls."

Following the bombshell report, TikTok announced that it moved its user data to Oracle cloud servers based in the US. However, TikTok has claimed in the past that US user data has always been stored in the US, and this new move doesn’t guarantee or explicitly state that user data can’t be accessed from other countries.

The New Face of the Google Play Store – Why Is Google Play Changing Their Logo?

There’s nothing like a branding refresh, and Google Play appears to be heading toward one of its own. The current and new logo is still a triangle, but the newer one appears to have muted colors and a general rounder appearance. While the branding change isn’t dramatic, the new Play Store logo still aims to be recognizable by its users.

This change comes after massive app store sweeps of “dead” apps on the marketplace and a holistic rebrand of the app store itself. Google Play has made changes to ensure a cleaner, safer and more user-friendly experience. The logo change may be a part of this rebranding.

As for now, the logo change has been relatively subdued. We can’t rule out that Google may be A/B testing the receptiveness of the newly designed logo to a select few places on the Android interface.

Our ASO Company knows that UX/UI principles are relatively the same when it comes to the mobile app experience. That is, small conscious tweaks to the design and limited releases are great ways to gauge the interest of users.

A few months ago, Instagram made a small change to their app logo that really just seemed to rub users the wrong way. What was the change? A simple higher saturation. Even the smallest of changes to app creatives could leave a sour taste in the mouths of users.

iOS 16 Beta For Public Release – When Is it Coming?

iOS 16 beta 1, 2 and 3 have now been released for developers. Yet the question remains, when will the beta version be released to the public? The long-awaited release of iOS 16 since the WWDC 22 announcement has social media speculating when it will finally drop.

According to Apple’s previous release history, the iOS 16 beta for public release may come as soon as July 11th. Historically, Apple has never released a new iOS update on Friday, so a late-in-the-week release is out of the question.

Here is the timeline of past major iOS releases:

iOS 14

+ 1st developer beta release – June 22, 2020
+ 1st public beta release – July 9, 2020
+ Official release – September 16, 2020

iOS 15

+ 1st developer beta release – June 7, 2021

+ 1st public beta release – June 30, 2021
+ Official release – September 20, 2021

Based on previous release history, the iOS 16 public beta release may take longer than anticipated. Just this week, the third iOS 16 beta was released by Apple. It may take anywhere between 2 to three weeks if not more for users to get the first taste of iOS 16.

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