Search Unity

Sudden drop in number of daily installs on Google Play Store

Discussion in 'General Discussion' started by AxPetre, Jun 23, 2018.

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  1. robotjam

    robotjam

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    Recommendations seem to be broken as well, and the not interested buttons dont work.

     
  2. pr3t3nd3r

    pr3t3nd3r

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    This links contains some interesting points of view: https://www.reddit.com/r/AndroidGam...elopers_are_facing_huge_drop_in_new_installs/

    The quality think i'm sure is not the reason, one of my games was hit very bad ... but a similar game which i'm sure it give bad signals according to google standard was untouched and not it have 2x installs ... it just makes no sense ...

    ... and now there are 2 weeks and no fix ... this is really not god for revenue and motivation of doing any more projects ...
     
  3. nitrogen777

    nitrogen777

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    Received their reply. This magic letter... 'cause maybe everybody knows its content. Here it is

    Thanks for contacting Google Play Developer Support.
    As part of our continued effort to deliver the best possible Google Play experience, we regularly update the Play Store to help people find and discover safe, high quality, useful, and relevant apps and games.
    Over the last year, we’ve been enhancing our search and discovery algorithms to better reflect app quality. Recently, we increased its importance in our recommendations. This results in more high quality titles being surfaced in the Play Store, which has positively impacted the overall user experience and engagement, which in turn helps developers.

    etc...
    So, seems like the situation (also called as 'problem') with GP is not just a bug.
     
  4. Murgilod

    Murgilod

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    Of course, "best quality" in this context 100% means revenue drivers, which is why the biggest apps weren't affected.
     
  5. Bala87

    Bala87

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    Do you see any improvement now after a week?
     
  6. Stan22z

    Stan22z

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    any answer from them yet?
     
  7. samulew

    samulew

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    How did you get 130 installs for 5 euro? That is exeptionaly great price
     
  8. Sultanware

    Sultanware

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    Dear developer, welcome to google roller coaster.
     
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  9. AxPetre

    AxPetre

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    After the people at Google support asked me to show them evidence to prove that the "Similar Apps" section is broken, and after I provided that evidence to them more than a week ago (see this post), today I just got the same awful template reply from them, the one with "focusing on app quality" and the "system is working on a stable and normal status".

    So, I'm sorry to say, but I think this is it. They won't acknowledge that there is any problem, so they'll fix nothing. The best we can hope for, is that in a few months they'll change the algo again, and maybe it will be less bad then.
     
    Last edited: Jul 6, 2018
  10. yourstoryinteractive

    yourstoryinteractive

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    Agree. I think it is time to move on and not wait for the miracle to happen.
     
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  11. gobitgames

    gobitgames

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    Like many of you, we experienced a dismaying drop in install numbers starting on June 22 or so.

    I wonder, though, if some of the drop is due to reporting inaccuracies in the Google Play console. Our console currently has the following message: "Some daily app statistics are currently experiencing delays. We expect to resolve the issue shortly."

    I checked the install numbers for one of our games for the last 30 days and compared them with a Google Analytics daily cohort analysis:

    user-compare.png

    Reported installs definitely started dropping on June 22, but notice that new daily users (as reported by our Google Analytics daily cohort analysis) didn't drop by the same amount.

    Before June 22, there were between 20%-30% more new users than reported installs.

    But starting June 23, there were between 90%-110% more new users than reported installs.

    It's true that this is still a lot fewer users, but maybe it's only half as bad as it looks from the install report?

    I'm just looking for a reason to be less pessimistic... as this has been a disturbing sudden change! :)
     
    Last edited: Jul 6, 2018
  12. gobitgames

    gobitgames

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    Here's another reason to be slightly less pessimistic, maybe?

    When we asked Google Play support about whether reduced installs were being caused by search bugs or the new algorithms, we received the following reply:

    We are aware of the search issue and our engineering team is hard at work producing a solution. My team is unable to determine which issue (search bug or algorithm change) is affecting your apps, but it may well be some combination of both. At this time, we do not have an ETA to offer you for a resolution to your issue.

    Regarding your question about how 'quality' is quantified: This is information that we do not have and cannot get, as it would be part of Google's proprietary search tools and therefore a secret. I apologize for the inconvenience.

    We appreciate your continued patience as we work to improve Play. Please let me know if you have any other questions.


    Regards,
    Pete
    Google Play Developer Support​
     
  13. Stan22z

    Stan22z

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    Firstly thanks for your sharing. But I've seen this message already somehwere. I think another template. There is only 2 people working for google support? Apparently just Luna and Pete. Wait what they gonna answer you but I think the same bullshit template "focusing on app quality" and the "system is working on a stable and normal status". Google just taking piss of us. viz AxPetre story. He had evidence of the bugs and gave it to them and on the end he received crap message about quality. So sad, they just drop us to make someone reach apparently,nothing about quality in gg
     
  14. nitrogen777

    nitrogen777

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    Now you know more about GPlay support :))
     
  15. screenracer

    screenracer

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  16. PZ2100

    PZ2100

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    Frankly, your explanation may have been too long, too dense and too complex for them to read in full.

    I'd make a wild guess that the person who got your message after multiple forwards doesn't know English well enough to even understand your email. Remember, they have offices around the globe, and likely 2/3 of their employees have English as a second language. If it's a technical person (like, a programmer), their English skill wasn't the first priority when getting hired.

    Imagine a guy at Google getting a huge email like yours. The first thing he wants to do is press a button to send a standard reply that vaguely matches the topic, and then just close the ticket and get their performance metrics improved for a swift resolution of the issue.

    What could convince them is a single screenshot of some game, with all kinds of random garbage (like, Ebay app) showing as similar apps. Though then, again, it's all too easy for them to say that it's just a single app you hand-picked from the store, and issue might be affecting just <5% of apps and thus isn't worth talking about..

    But don't give up just yet. If "More by this developer" list for Google's own apps loops at just 10 apps, someone at Google will notice, and they will start fixing. Likely the issues are inter-related.
     
    Last edited: Jul 13, 2018
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  17. m3rt32

    m3rt32

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    Two of my games started dropping from daily 500 to 20 and wtf ? This is ridiculous :(
     
  18. Stan22z

    Stan22z

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    wow,perfect even 3 names but templates still the same :D
     
  19. Stan22z

    Stan22z

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    since when?
     
  20. Stan22z

    Stan22z

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    Does anyone release new app/game? if is it actually point to release something new on playstore now. No doubt about there are bugs in the store,but problem is if is gonna stay like that not much motivation to release anything there
     
  21. AxPetre

    AxPetre

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    The last explanation was thorough at the expense of simplicity. But I've sent them two messages before that one, which were a lot simpler and easier to follow (with screenshots attached), and they didn't seemed convinced, so they requested more evidence which I provided to them with that "dense and too complex" message.

    The latest messages from them came at a time of day when it was midnight in countries like India, Bangladesh, or Philippines, but it was during working hours in US, so I don't think English was a problem for whoever answered me.

    Already sent them several screenshots about this. People will not be convinced by facts and evidence if they're not interested to hear about facts and evidence.

    I wasted a lot of time and effort with this issue already. But, you can do it if you think they'll be more receptive to your style of presenting evidence (unless you have done it already and you're waiting now for their reply).
     
  22. Drunken-Monkey

    Drunken-Monkey

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    I released my first game during this time. I never show up on anyone's similar games and never get more than 2 new users a day. I been following this thread pretty closely..
     
  23. einEntwickler

    einEntwickler

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    Maybe we should use the "Send feedback" form when we find illogical "Similar apps" suggestions. It could be that a different team reviews user feedback.

    similar_feedback.png
     

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  24. nitrogen777

    nitrogen777

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    I sent a reply to GPlay support, something like "if I've checked my apps for 'performance recommendations' compliance, and they are fully 'on the right way', but the 'new installs' still have low value than before, what then?" and
    "Are there any guarantees if we made really good app (by Google's point of view), that app will have better (than our currently published apps) installs level after publishing, at least not less than average for category the app is in?"
     
  25. Stan22z

    Stan22z

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    I've sent them this by feedback

    mess.png
    I am not sure what is happening with playstore, but it looks broken. After any app when I click similar and see more will pop up to 5 relative apps(through some action example) and rest is just mixed and ussually same games over again. Example granny is kind of horror game and poping up just in every section. when you look through granny to similars how many relative apps will be there?viz.screenshot. Not sure if google has some testers but all system seems to be broken and there is not relative answer for it. Even my 65 years old daddy realize that bad change in sections. similar, related,you might like,recomanded for you: those ones showing complete mix and nothing to do with apps I may like or install it. I wanted to ask if is pernament issue or anyone working to fix it? Thank you
     
  26. PZ2100

    PZ2100

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    I wasn't criticizing you. More like, guessing why your extensive explanation didn't work on them. You've done a great job, but it's a no-win situation apparently.

    Yeah, first they ask you for more evidence, then they get bored reading.

    I got the same boilerplate "quality" reply as everyone else...
     
    Last edited: Jul 7, 2018
  27. Rockaso

    Rockaso

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    Same here, Nukes of Bastion was making a steady 80 daily downloads, then started to make 100+ downloads a day, suddenly dropped to an average of 12~ downloads per day, this happened around 23~ june as well. Discouraging...
     

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  28. Bala87

    Bala87

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  29. LilGames

    LilGames

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    So let's say this is the new normal, and it is as Google implies, to better surface "quality" apps, I would like to know how much time (aka how much data) do they require in order to make an accurate determination that a particular app is meeting those quality thresholds? I can understand burying an app that's been out for a couple months and has insane crash rates, but what about a new app that has no historical data? Buried on release or ... what??

    And what about releases that fix problems? Let's say your app was getting insane crash rates, got buried by Google, then you fixed it 100%. If Google has buried it already then you will not get sufficient installs to build up enough data to "prove" to the algorithm it's no longer crashy. Right??
     
  30. zombiegorilla

    zombiegorilla

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    You won’t, no one does. It’s the same on all the marketplaces. It’s intentionally black box to prevent gaming and abuse. That is the main reason behind soft launches / limited launches / early access, to catch problems like that when you do a full release. It is difficult to recover from problems at release, you need to minimize them. After that it’s all about marketing. If you can drive people to your game the organiics will go up as well
     
  31. robotjam

    robotjam

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    Hi again,

    Thanks for clarifying how you're searching for apps.

    Since the issue you've described doesn't appear to be related to the Play-wide issues that we're currently investigating, what I suggest is that you contact User Support - they are in the best position to help you quickly resolve issues with your device.

    https://support.google.com/googleplay#topic=3364260

    I will be in touch again when fixes for the other bugs you've mentioned are available.
     
  32. akguldeniz

    akguldeniz

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    Oh, i found a club for myself.

    I wonder if anyone has download jump in the meaning time? BTW i just published a new game and have only 100 download per day. It's the fourth game of a serie and i made my best optimization with best graphics if the quality is matters. First 3 (actually 2) games reached more than 10 mil. download but this one is not moving to anywhere.

    My delete / install rate is really makes no sense. Looks like google sending me a user who really don't give a S*** about my game style. My game is a vehicle driving game and when i check my analytics on unity panel i see that there are some players even can't find vehicle gear(its huge at right side of the screen with D-R opitions), keep pressing gas and decides to delete game.

    Looks like players who don't even have idea with this kind of games coming to my page, see my screenshots, wonder it, download, can't play it and this kills the game stats/ranks.

    another friend of mine has released game weeks ago and spend 5-6k USD to adwords campaing to reach 100k download before the first month. Right after he decides to stop adwords BOOM 50 download daily!

    And i really wonder where the F*** is "new and popular games" tabs. We had it for every category in past.

    Players will always think like "latest games are the bests" because of the technology of course but there is no any new tab any more. There are "You may like it" tabs everywhere.
     
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  33. christovstoi9

    christovstoi9

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    what do you think is the chance that it will come back to normal?
     
  34. nitrogen777

    nitrogen777

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    GPlay support reply:

    Thanks for your reply!
    I would say we do not have any guarantee that has influence on better install levels for apps.
    However, we place a high value on developer feedback, and I’ll be sure to pass along your specific feedback to our product team.
    We’re continually adding new features and functionality, so please stay tuned.
    These changes result in higher quality apps being surfaced in the Play Store more than similar apps of lower quality (eg: apps that exhibit more frequent crashes).
    The changes have had a positive impact on engagement -- we've seen that people go on to use higher quality apps more and uninstall them less.
    Again, thanks for your product feedback, and if have any further question, please let me know. I will be happy to help.
     
    Last edited: Jul 9, 2018
  35. KendyVy

    KendyVy

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    I monitor many applications spike. I really do not understand
     

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  36. Stan22z

    Stan22z

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    any template answer yet? :D
     
  37. gobitgames

    gobitgames

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    Haha. I can imagine the template answer now:

    Thanks for your reply!

    We are aware that some app developers are looking for a reason to be less pessimistic about the recent changes to the Google Play search algorithm. While we can't tell you exactly how to be less pessimistic, we've found that when looking at a glass which contains half air and half delicious liquid, considering the glass to be half full of the delicious liquid produces a sensation of less pessimism than considering the glass to be half empty with plain old air.​
     
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  38. screenracer

    screenracer

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  39. Leonid

    Leonid

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    For those who expirienced huge downloads drop - have your games GDPR consent dialog at the start?
     
  40. red_unit

    red_unit

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    Nope. We use only GoogleID, SteamID and AppleID, and never asked users for any personal data.
     
  41. Avietry

    Avietry

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    I am following this issue for 3 weeks. There is no pattern about "quality" at all. God knows what kind of user information is being used by Google in the background. Nevertheless I am not surprised. Google has always been like this about its products.

    My experience: I have a personal developer account and also work for a team (separate account), team I work for saw 20-30% increase in downloads, my two relatively popular personal app/game saw like 70-90% drops.
     
  42. mentolatux

    mentolatux

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    nothing new ? if we publish new app will be something or will be no downlaods ? maybe if pay adwords ?
     
  43. Stan22z

    Stan22z

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    "
    However, what plenty are currently pointing to is an inconsistency between an app’s category, description and content with the apps shown on the similar apps panel.

    According to Android Police, the fallout is a result of a bug that is interfering with how apps can verify paid licenses.

    The bug has since been acknowledged by a Google employee who said the problem is under investigation. A fix has yet to arrive.
    "
    part of that article.. if i understood well,they are trying to say that there is different bug which affecting also other sections as similar and other tabs? basicly same if you doing game and you fix one problem and it will pop up more of them not related to first one...
     
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  44. Stan22z

    Stan22z

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    I didn't hear any positive news since the store is changed / broken for releasing new game. I think would be uselless until at least similar section going to be fixed or updated by algorythm. who knows how it works their system.
     
  45. Stan22z

    Stan22z

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    nothing about to be pessimistic. I need facts and numbers, I am realist so give me rather glass of wine gg :D please. just want to know confirmation about reply from gg if they're taking piss off us or there is some mirracle relative answer from them, that's all.
     
  46. akguldeniz

    akguldeniz

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    i think similar section is killing us. System sending our app pages un-related users. they don't even download our apps. Or download and deleting quickly. I think this is why we losing rank in speedlight.
     
  47. Antony-Blackett

    Antony-Blackett

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    Nothing to do with it. Both games don't have it, one went up one went down.

    The only thing i can think of is that they are weighting games that have had store front featuring in the past (human vetting process) higher than ones that haven't.
     
  48. Tamasenco

    Tamasenco

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    Seems not the case either as our game been featured by google before a month but still we lost 95% of the organic installs...
     
  49. Dzoni85

    Dzoni85

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    Hi everyone,
    I have 2 questions:
    1. Does someone know, if only games that are made with Unity are affected? We have some accounts with native small games/apps, and those accounts are not hit hard, some games/apps have 20-40% less organic installs, other have 20-40% more installs after 21. June.
    2. A few days ago, in the GP console under Android vitals, we got a new category "Stuck partial wake locks", and we are in the bottom 16%, even if we are under Bad behavior threshold. We have 0,01% and the Bad behavior threshold is 0.10%. Is this "Stuck partial wake locks" caused by Unity, because this is Battery related problem?
     
  50. breaker2005

    breaker2005

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    Which unity version and google play services you use in your games? Maybe it's somehow related
     
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