How Apple is experimenting with tvOS top charts


Apple changes its Apple TV tvOS Top Charts algorithm

Is Apple trying to give the Apple TV App Store a boost? That might explain why Apple has changed the way the Top Charts algorithms work on tvOS. We noticed this major change last week and have figured out what’s going on.

Where did our apps go?

After we released an update to Live TV (German TV Streams) last week, we were shocked to see it had disappeared from the Top Free charts. Live TV has been one of the most popular apps on the Apple TV in Germany and has been in the Top 10 almost since day 1, so for it to disappear completely was inconceivable.

We checked and double-checked iTunes Connect, refreshed the App Store, checked our crash logs, but nothing stood out.

Apple-TV-App-Store-1 Apple-TV-App-Store-2


The change

In turns out, Apple now hides an app in the charts once you’ve installed it. Give it a try: Go install TV Pro Mediathek (VOD for German TV content) from the App Store (currently #3 Top Grossing in Germany) and then go back in to the App Store: boom – it’s gone from the charts and the next-placed app has moved up.

This tvOS top charts algorithm change even affects featured apps on the start page: TV Pro Mediathek no longer shows up in its featured slot on the start page of the German App Store once you've installed it.

Apple's intention with the change is presumably to make the charts appear 'fresher' and users see more apps that they haven't installed yet.

The downside is that the charts don't really show an accurate picture of what the 'Top' apps are, instead they show 'Top apps that you haven't installed yet'.

So maybe this is what Phil Schiller meant when he said:

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