May 11, 2015 Last Updated 3:37 pm

Twitter updates live streaming app Periscope; TripAdvisor joins every two week update club

Is there value in frequent app updates beyond simply fine-tuning the app? There doesn’t appear to be, though top apps do update frequently

Twitter’s live video app Periscope was updated today, bring the app up to version 1.0.4. The app, which was originally launched late in March, not on Twitter’s every two weeks update schedule.

Periscope-broadcastWhat’s New in Version 1.0.4
[+] Take a new profile picture (or upload one from your Camera Roll)
[+] Tap on a comment and click “reply” to compose a new message addressed to that user
[+] Sign up for Periscope using just your phone number (no Twitter account required)

Minor changes/fixes:
– Twitter verified badges now appear in the users section, and in search
– Your list of following/followers is now sorted by recency (instead of alphabetically)
– The ‘Broadcasts’ section of your profile now shows your full broadcast history (to you only)

The app has gotten one of the best reviews I’ve seen in a while from a first time reviewer who says he tried to install the app on his Mac but it won’t open. (It’s an iPhone app, buddy.) Lots of other negative reviwes complain about the app on their iPad.

What’s the value of updating your app eveyr two weeks? Twitter and Facebook do it, and now TripAdvisor says it will go to an every two week update schedule for its iOS app, TripAdvisor Hotels Flights Restaurants.

version-update-frequency-chartSensorTower surveyed the top apps and found that the update cycle was around 30 days, but the reason given to update frequently is generally just to keep the app top-of-mind.

But does that really apply today when so many iOS users have their apps update automatically? Is there a better reason?

The best reason for frequent updates is, of course, to keep the app performing well by fixing bugs. This is logical, especially for games and social media apps. But publishing apps are almost always built using digital publishing platforms and frequent app updates are rare (though the platforms are always updating the platform itself, as well as their previewer apps).

Pinterest updates their app every three weeks, but the reason is rather mundane (htough pretty funny): “Because I got pushback when I tried for two? That’s the honest answer,” Mike Beltzner, mobile product lead for Pinterest, told InformationWeek.

The motivation to move to a two-week cycle seems to be driven by app developers, not necessarily by app sales. In other words, the most successful apps employ their own development team and therefore are in a position to do frequent app updates.

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