I've written here many times of my frustrations with apps that purport to improve news distribution and formatting on the iPad platform. Many of these apps have been foisted upon us by large media companies who are desperately trying to plug the hole in their revenue streams, instead of looking at the opportunity for building and delivering a great, new user experience on the iPad platform. Because of that the user is left with a less than compelling, and in my case, frustrating experience.
A couple of days ago I came upon yet another level-headed review of an iPad app by Khoi Vinh. It was an overview of a new app called Tweetmag.
I'll cut a long story short - I disliked it.
I decided that I've been spending too much money on apps that have either been complete failures or have not lived up to their promise. This time I went to the Apple iTunes store and filed a complaint asking for a refund of $4.99. In the past this has been a seamless experience. If I downloaded a movie to Apple TV that didn't play or accidentally bought the wrong app, they would refund my account immediately. Last night was a different story.
Apple sent me here. A site that offers a way to "get satisfaction." A community driven site where I am asked to post my complaint - so I did. And now I am waiting.
If the folks behind Tweetmag think that I am "getting satisfied" I sincerely hope that they refund my $4.99 as this feels a lot like high school to me. To be continued...
[Update] Apple finally came through and gave me a refund. I also was able to converse through the Twittermag Get Satisfaction community with someone who works for, or who is behind, Tweetmag. Although the refund was issued I still feel like nothing was really resolved. The lesson for me though, is stop buying apps, stick to the free ones, decide if they offer an experience that's different and engaging, then hopefully pay to step up to a more superior experience. The freemium model as Chris Anderson calls it.