iPhone app update & install bugs

AppleTell writes about one bug involving application updating on the iPhone, which I can confirm.

The problem is with how iTunes installs app updates. Like I said, I had already updated Cro-Mag Rally once before. What I didn’t realise at the time was iTunes didn’t actually overwrite the original file—it creates a duplicate! Yes, you read correctly. iTunes created another file in the Music/iTunes/Mobile Applications folder called “Cro-Mag 1.ipaâ€? to sit along side the original ‘Cro-Mag.ipa’ file. I checked the info of the app currently in my iTunes library at that time, and sure enough, it’s file name was “Cro-Mag 1.ipa.â€? Now we’re getting to the problem. You see, when iTunes is checking for app updates, it must be going by file name rather than app name. So, in this case, iTunes has been
checking for updates for “Cro-Mag 1â€? instead of “Cro-Mag,â€? and, of course, it won’t find any.

To prove this, I removed Cro-Mag Rally from the iTunes Library, but kept the file. Then I deleted the original “Cro-Mag.ipaâ€? file and re-named the other, removing the “1â€? from its name. Then I added it back to iTunes with its new name of “Cro-Mag.ipaâ€? by dragging it to the iTunes window. Immediately, I had the message at the bottom of the window telling me of an update available!

However, I’ve found two much more serious problems.

Applications purchased in iTunes are handled differently than applications purchased on the iPhone. If I purchased an application in iTunes, I can only update it from iTunes. If it was purchased on my iPhone, I can only update it from the App Store on my iPhone.

Far more serious, I find that apps I purchased on my iPhone aren’t being backed up to my Mac and can’t be managed from iTunes. If I try to delete one of those applications from the iPhone, it warns me that the application hasn’t been backed up. Has anyone else seen this?

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