There is discussion of creating a separate App Stores site. This proposal seems to be far too narrow a topic to sustain engagement and to be something within the scope of programmers (objective questions related, but not directly about programming). Are these questions on topic?

  • Could you help us out a bit with a couple example questions? Some licencing questions would be perfectly on topic, but I don't know what you have in mind. – yannis May 5 '12 at 17:07
  • @YannisRizos: I may ask some app store questions in the future, but I posted this question because I saw I discussion going on as to whether these questions had a home on programmers and I thought that discussion should occur here. – Casebash May 5 '12 at 17:56

This was a discussion on Meta Stack Overflow a few days ago which had comments that mirrored an earlier discussion we had here, and while I don't want to say every app store question is off-topic here, it's unlikely many of the questions people would want to ask—namely questions about app store policies and such—would be on-topic anywhere on Stack Exchange.

The main issue is that we are not Apple, or RIM, or Amazon, or any of the other private entities that make or enforce those policies, so we'd only be speculating and a poor substitute for the people developers should be asking, which are the people who work for those companies.

Looking at the example questions for the proposal, it looks like the App Stores proposal is going to suffer from this right from the get-go:

  1. Is there a limit on how long you can hold on to an app name in ?
  2. Can an app name have special characters?
  3. I created an app that only works with third-party hardware. Do I have to send the hardware to Apple to get approval? How do they test such apps?
  4. Is there any hard evidence on how much individual app developers have actually earned?
  5. Will my app be deleted from [store] if no one downloads it for [x time]?

Questions 1, 2, 3, and 5 are all questions for the companies running the App Stores and making the policies, not random strangers on the internet who aren't in the know.

Question 4 is just a bad SE question in general: taken at its face value, it's a simple yes or no question (there is evidence or there isn't). Reading between the lines, someone asking that likely wants to know how much they're going to make as an app developer, which is highly localized (and more often than not, attributable to pure dumb luck).

I don't have high hopes for the App Store proposal: I don't think it's going to fail because of lack of interest, but because it's not a topic that Stack Exchange handles well. I don't think trying to redirect people from that proposal to here does anyone any favors.

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