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Ask Slashdot: What Makes You Uninstall Apps? 243

Posted by Soulskill
from the that-cottage-cheese-smell dept.
jones_supa writes "One of the most important measuring sticks for the success of any software is how long a user keeps it installed after first trying it. Intel has an article about some of the most common reasons users abandon software. Quoting: 'Apps that don’t offer anything helpful or unique tend to be the ones that are uninstalled the most frequently. People cycle through apps incredibly quickly to find the one that best fits their needs. ... A lot of apps have a naturally limited lifecycle; i.e., apps that are centered around a movie release or an app that tracks a pregnancy, or an app that celebrates a holiday. In addition, apps with limited functionality, for example, “lite” games that only go so far, are uninstalled once the user has mastered all the levels.' Some of the common factors they list include: lengthy forms, asking for ratings, collecting unnecessary data, user unfriendliness, unnecessary notifications and, of course, bugs. Additionally, if people have paid even a small price for the app, they are more committed to keep it installed. So, what makes you uninstall a piece of software?"
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Ask Slashdot: What Makes You Uninstall Apps?

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  • by ackthpt (218170) on Friday November 15, 2013 @05:40PM (#45438219) Homepage Journal

    If there's one thing I can't abide, it's apps running in the background, poking their noses into my affairs.

    • by sunderland56 (621843) on Friday November 15, 2013 @05:51PM (#45438363)

      The concept on Android of listing app permissions is a good one - although it needs to be MUCH more detailed, and you need to be able to filter in the app store based on permissions.

      Right now, to find a suitable app that won't do something you dislike - e.g. running in the background - you need to install it, see if it does the bad thing, then uninstall it. If those attributes were clearly listed, and searchable, then you could only install and try out the ones that aren't instantly annoying.

      • by ackthpt (218170) on Friday November 15, 2013 @06:03PM (#45438523) Homepage Journal

        The concept on Android of listing app permissions is a good one - although it needs to be MUCH more detailed, and you need to be able to filter in the app store based on permissions.

        Right now, to find a suitable app that won't do something you dislike - e.g. running in the background - you need to install it, see if it does the bad thing, then uninstall it. If those attributes were clearly listed, and searchable, then you could only install and try out the ones that aren't instantly annoying.

        I was greatly dismayed to see how many apps expect access to my email, location and contacts directory, most with no need whatsoever for such information. I don't install a lot of apps. I'd rather develop them.

        • by blackraven14250 (902843) on Friday November 15, 2013 @06:08PM (#45438587)
          One thing that bugs me about Android is that for something like contact listings, which are likely useful to the developer at one point or another, and potentially to the user, it's just a blanket permission that could mean anything from "going to constantly monitor everything in all of your contacts" to "this app will ask you once if you want to share with friends".
          • Even worse is network access, that could be everything from "hey, I'm free, gotta send some ads" to "Imma take all of your actions and send them home"

            • by owlstead (636356)

              OK, I can understand this one, but there are so many ways of hiding information in a channel that you simply need to have a blanket permission. Otherwise you are promising something that you cannot enforce.

              What I could see is permissions for specific ad services, or access to specific servers. Even then the last one is of limited use; it could only help against sharing information with a *third party*. If you don't trust the developer, then just connecting with the server of the developer is enough to share

        • by tlhIngan (30335)

          I was greatly dismayed to see how many apps expect access to my email, location and contacts directory, most with no need whatsoever for such information. I don't install a lot of apps. I'd rather develop them.

          Well, it's usually for advertising because of Android's strange payment models make ads about the only way to make money. Sure they probably make some sense, but considering there's a variance in support for Google Wallet and especially in-app-purchases on a country level, an app developer who wants t

        • by mikael (484) on Friday November 15, 2013 @07:00PM (#45439151)

          I have "Ad Network Detector". I run that on all downloaded applications. Anything that tracks my location, collects device or mobile network information, needs my list of contacts, has popup advertising and hotkeys that jump to a web page gets thrown out. I'd also throw out "TapJoy", "Mobclix", Mobo and Game Hub if it were possible to remove them.

        • by kbrannen (581293) on Friday November 15, 2013 @07:02PM (#45439165)

          I was greatly dismayed to see how many apps expect access to my email, location and contacts directory, most with no need whatsoever for such information.

          Yes, that is really annoying. I tried to install a Flashlight app the other day. I had to go thru about 6 of them before I found one that didn't need any permissions. I mean really, why does a flashligh need permission for the network? Do I really need to see an ad for the 5s seconds I have the flashlight on to find the keyhole to my front door in the dark?

          • by ackthpt (218170) on Friday November 15, 2013 @07:22PM (#45439305) Homepage Journal

            I was greatly dismayed to see how many apps expect access to my email, location and contacts directory, most with no need whatsoever for such information.

            Yes, that is really annoying. I tried to install a Flashlight app the other day. I had to go thru about 6 of them before I found one that didn't need any permissions. I mean really, why does a flashligh need permission for the network? Do I really need to see an ad for the 5s seconds I have the flashlight on to find the keyhole to my front door in the dark?

            No.., but the NSA wants to see what you are snooping around with a flashlight for. 8o)

            Yeah, that was where I initially saw the ludicrous access garnering, a flashlight app. Seriously, what does a damn flashlight need to know about my contacts or location? Too much free or even pay-for apps are up to no good.

          • Get the one from F-Droid. There is an open-source package repository and it has a bunch of useful open-source apps for Android.

            You can be quite sure whatever you get from F-Droid is not an ad-ladden spyware. It doesn't have many apps, but there are some very good ones, and signal-to-noise ratio is much better than official app store.

            --Coder
        • by mcrbids (148650) on Saturday November 16, 2013 @01:17AM (#45441305) Journal

          Why not add the ability to revoke permissions to an app?

          Great, so the flashlight app wants to read my contact list: how about NOPE? 2D game wants to access my camera? How about NOPE? Other OS's include the ability to reject permissions to an app.

          Why not Android?

      • The concept on Android of listing app permissions is a good one - although it needs to be MUCH more detailed...

        Considering that way too many of them seem to want access to damned near everything...

        • by Jane Q. Public (1010737) on Friday November 15, 2013 @06:25PM (#45438805)

          The concept on Android of listing app permissions is a good one - although it needs to be MUCH more detailed...

          Considering that way too many of them seem to want access to damned near everything...

          I would go further: not just the listing but the control needs to be more detailed. For EACH app, I should be able to set which system services the app is allowed to access. That would only take a few bytes of storage or memory per app... hardly an onerous requirement.

          • by Darinbob (1142669)

            Inspector: "I think it would be more appropriate if the box bore a large red label warning lark's vomit."
            Vendor: "Our sales would plummet!"

      • by citizenr (871508) on Friday November 15, 2013 @06:44PM (#45439017) Homepage

        The concept on Android of listing app permissions is a good one

        NO IT IS NOT!
        A good system would let you fine tune permissions per app (+ spoof data if you so desire), and not a hostage of "I need to read your contact list" game.

      • by Darinbob (1142669) on Friday November 15, 2013 @08:45PM (#45440005)

        Android app permissions seems very weird. The most innocuous app will claim that it wants permission for some very dangerous things. Ie, "Firefox" wants access for Near Field Communication, ability to delete contents of my storage, and ability remove accounts. Google Search update wants the ability to directly call phone numbers or send SMS messages (for search???), and add/modify calendar entries (from search??), and pairing with Bluetooth devices (for search??).

        Now maybe some of this is just having overly broad categories, but some of these things do appear to be new as the existing application doesn't claim to need the same permissions as the updated versions do.

        The problem is that the choices are to accept whatever the stupid app wants or to forbid it entirely. There is no middle ground of allowing the app but forbidding access to things I want to restrict. I can do this with location info (there's a global option to restrict it for all apps) but that's the exception and not the rule.

        So I've been uninstalling stuff more often than not. I don't need this stuff, I think the whole concept of apps is ridiculous in the first place. Occasionally useful but not worth the reduction in privacy and security.

        • by tepples (727027) <tepples@gm a i l . com> on Friday November 15, 2013 @10:19PM (#45440535) Homepage Journal

          "Firefox" wants access for Near Field Communication, ability to delete contents of my storage, and ability remove accounts. Google Search update wants the ability to directly call phone numbers or send SMS messages (for search???), and add/modify calendar entries (from search??)

          Firefox wants NFC for NFC sharing [slashdot.org]. Google Search is also the device's voice command prompt; it gains new privileges as Google adds new features to compete with Siri. It probably wants dialing so that when you say "OK Google, call Staisy", you'll get connected. probably wants calendar writing so that when you say "OK Google, remind me of a meeting with Milo at 3:30 on Thursday", you'll get it on your calendar. I'm not sure about Bluetooth though.

          The problem is that the choices are to accept whatever the stupid app wants or to forbid it entirely. There is no middle ground of allowing the app but forbidding access to things I want to restrict.

          Android 4.3 introduces App Ops, which you can download from Google Play Store. It lets you disable individual permissions for individual applications. It's hidden by default because it would cause too many existing apps to force-stop with a SecurityException.

      • by mlts (1038732) *

        What Android needs a permissions model similar to BlackberryOS or iOS 6/7. First time a device requests something, a dialog pops up. That way, if an app asks for the world with permissions, one can do more than allow or deny.

        There used to be an app pre-4.2 that would help with this, LBE Privacy Guard. It could be configured so if an app asksed for contacts, it would receive them... made up garbage. Same with locations and texts. That way, an app can have a lot of permissions, but wouldn't be able to do

    • by MightyMartian (840721) on Friday November 15, 2013 @05:55PM (#45438423) Journal

      I'm confused. Are you talking about apps or girlfriends?

      • Re: (Score:2, Funny)

        by Anonymous Coward

        Are you talking about apps or girlfriends?

        This is slashdot. Take a wild guess at which (s)he is talking about.

    • by jkauzlar (596349)

      I removed my facebook app, because my phone would buzz once or twice a day on random posts from 'friends' I barely know. Words With Friends kept buzzing with pointless notifications too. In short, if I can't just forget I have it and use it when i want, then I'll uninstall it.

      • I removed my facebook app, because my phone would buzz once or twice a day on random posts from 'friends' I barely know. Words With Friends kept buzzing with pointless notifications too. In short, if I can't just forget I have it and use it when i want, then I'll uninstall it.

        I assume that you are running Android? Are you saying that those apps on android do not prompt to be able to send notifications in the background? On iOS, an app has to ask for permission to send background notifications and you can always easily disable that ability in the settings app.

        • by mythosaz (572040)

          You can easily set what thing you get notified for in Android.

          If you don't like the app's internal settings, just feel free to uncheck "Show notifications" in the app info page.

        • by Darinbob (1142669)

          They ask for that permission, but during installation where it has a long list of permissions that the app wants. Some of them seem somewhat innocuous at first until you think about the implications. If you disagree with the requested permissions you can't install the app.

          For notifications you can turn it on per-app, but it's not obvious how to do this as you have to navigate to the global "apps" settings then set it for each app. I think somewhere someone had a boneheaded design decision that settings w

      • by SeaFox (739806)

        I removed my facebook app, because my phone would buzz once or twice a day on random posts from 'friends' I barely know.

        Have you considered part of the issue here is becoming "friends" with people you don't really care about?

  • by drakesword (3203755) on Friday November 15, 2013 @05:40PM (#45438233)
    Or if it doesn't work, then why keep it
    • Usually, its not working as promised is the only reason I uninstall. Other things are there, but usually don't cause me to uninstall. Only its non working, as well as bugs in the software
      • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

        by drakesword (3203755)
        You have not run into an ad supported app that pushes adds to your notifications bar yet
    • by perpenso (1613749) on Friday November 15, 2013 @06:59PM (#45439145)
      As a developer I'd like to know a little more about notifications and what users consider acceptable. For example in one of my apps, http://www.perpenso.com/calc/calc3.html [perpenso.com], I have some one time notifications regarding optional calculator modes. I may point out that historically calculators may do A or B, and that this app does A. The handful of notifications that I have are related to very common user errors.

      So, what do people think. Are one time notifications regarding common mistakes acceptable?
      • by exploder (196936)

        Unsolicited notifications are never acceptable and I have uninstalled every app that has ever bugged me with one. As the other reply asked, why not include this information as a "tip of the day" when the app is invoked, rather than shove it in the notification bar where important stuff goes? Why do I need to know something about your calculator at some random time when I'm not even using it?

  • Apart from notifications and ads I'd say impact on my battery would be a good reason to get rid of an app.
  • They spy on you! (Score:5, Interesting)

    by Anonymous Coward on Friday November 15, 2013 @05:46PM (#45438297)

    Many apps ask for far more permissions than needed.

    I was once testing a 3270 emulator app to access a mainframe system over a vpn.

    The emulator app refused to run unless you give it full access to your email.

    When I called the vendor to ask why, they said it was so that users could automatically send support requests by email.

    I can write my own email, thanks.

    Uninstalled, and the vendor lost out on a multi-thousand dollar purchase.

  • My List. (Score:5, Interesting)

    by briancox2 (2417470) on Friday November 15, 2013 @05:47PM (#45438317) Homepage Journal
    #1 Zinga buys it.

    #2 Freer software comes out that can fulfill the utility.

    #3 ParanoidAndroid and AdAway are not capable of taming the program the way I'd like.
  • by Anonymous Coward on Friday November 15, 2013 @05:47PM (#45438323)

    I do wish it were easier to archive apps on iOS. On Android, I can use Titanium Backup, save a game off, and uninstall it. If I want to play it again, I can grab the APK from the TB archive, or if on a different device, install the game, restore the game save data.

    On iOS, backups are all or nothing (although some games store their save game data in the Documents folder that one can back up in iTunes.) Next to a jailbreak and AppBackup, there isn't any real way to archive off a larger game like Chaos Rings when done with it.

    Of course, the things that will cause me to toss a game:

    1: If I see it trying to open up scads of behavioral tracking, analytic, and other spyware sites.

    2: If it is worthless. Most games on iOS look good, but demand tons of "smurfberries" (or whatever currency you have to pay for) in order to advance. Want a decent plot in Zombie Farm, brains are a buck a piece. Want a good eatery in Zombie Cafe? Pony up for the toxins. Want decent armor in a MMO? Time to pay up. Want a better boomstick in Army of Darkness? Time for an IAP.

    3: If it isn't maintained. Even an app that is fairly feature complete needs an update just to keep up with the latest OS looks.

    4: If it is just a shell around a crappy, SEO-encumbered web page, like the Cracked app on Android.

    5: If it requires activation or another account with them to work. For example, the Pixelmags apps on iOS. They need to just deal with Apple, not require one to have an account with them in order to read stuff.

    • It doesn't even have to be updates asking for more rights. I usually uninstall software I don't use once it starts bothering me with upgrades at all. On Linux, I never have that problem as I generally know which software I need and don't just try out new programs without a good reason, but on OS X and Android, where I mostly install things through their respective app stores, some applications will be asking to update themselves more often than I consider polite.

      On Linux I usually apt-get update once a w
      • What about a new app, though?

        I just came out with a new app - a Palm emulator. I couldn't think of everything, and there have already, just in the first few days, been requests for legitimate features that make sense to provide to users. Plus, apparently a couple devices might have problems, too. I'm going to have to put out at least a few more updates. Heck, a lot of the "getting your app noticed" advice say you should update regularly, to indicate an actively-maintained and healthy app.

        So, how to strik

        • by tkprit (8581) on Friday November 15, 2013 @09:54PM (#45440409) Homepage

          the Market for updates?

          I use (and paid for) a calendar app that updates often. NEVER nags me. When I have a moment, I'll look to see if there are any updates to my apps. I'll read what the changes are, see if people are having problems with the update, THEN decide for myself if I want to download/install the newer version.

          Am I many versions behind? Hell yeah. But I'm a happy camper. And I LOOK for this dev's new apps when I've got the time. Because I know his apps won't bug me.

          That fucking camera app, $5 and a huge user base, best one out there. Until it got to be every. time. I. opened. it. it wanted to know if I wanted some new ding-dong "buddy" (an Obama picture,or a swastika) and I missed SO MANY PHOTOS because of that. Cameras should be instant-on, no fucking "let's stop and show you our new BUDDY, go download it now since you're fully paid". / "Not today? Maybe you'd like to try some of our other apps?!" —I wrote the devs an email and uninstalled, and will NEVER use anything they code again. What a crackhead move! Now I'm back on freakin stock camera/camcorder, but at least I can get a picture.

          Those "surveys" are wrong. The users can check for updates on their own. (Oh, and user reviews? I tweet them and link to the Market. Please don't pull a YouTube and nag people to sign up for G+ to rate.)

  • by TechyImmigrant (175943) on Friday November 15, 2013 @05:49PM (#45438345) Journal

    Recently I've had a spate of 'updates' to android apps that are asking for me to approve additional privileges.

    One instance was a button on the main page to turn wifi on and off (rather than digging into the settings menu). This was quite useful.
    Then it got an update and wanted access to post on my behalf, the internet, my phone lists and a bunch of other things. So I uninstalled it.

    This has happened several times. I'm guess it's a common attack vector.

  • Change Permissions (Score:5, Informative)

    by Rob Riggs (6418) on Friday November 15, 2013 @05:51PM (#45438365) Homepage Journal
    I uninstall apps when they change permissions to grab my identity, contacts, camera, etc. There's only one reason for that and it ain't good.
  • by Anonymous Coward on Friday November 15, 2013 @05:52PM (#45438369)
    There's this class of app that tries to be everything. I hate it. Yes, maybe some apps have a limited scope, but this is a good thing: I usually download an app for a specific use case. If it tries to do other things without my input or obscures what I'm trying to do, that's the point where I get sick of it and get rid of it.
  • by The MAZZTer (911996) <megazzt@NoSPAM.gmail.com> on Friday November 15, 2013 @05:53PM (#45438389) Homepage

    On a PC there's no pressing need since I have lots of disk space, and it's easy to keep apps from running in the background.

    On Android is another story. Very limited space, and apps can run in the background very easily and are hard or impossible to kill in some cases. I recently uninstalled outlook.com app since I never used it (I installed it intending to, but never did) and it was sucking battery life. I also uninstall apps which provide duplicate functionality that I already have in an app I prefer. Large apps have to really be persuasive to stay as well.

  • by johnrpenner (40054) on Friday November 15, 2013 @05:54PM (#45438397) Homepage

    when it crashes my machine — it is done.

  • by Kagato (116051) on Friday November 15, 2013 @05:55PM (#45438431)

    Almost all pre-loaded software on a major PC brand (excluding Apple) is crippleware. In many cases the computer vendor has been paid to pre-install the software. So my answer to people about the first thing to do is to uninstall all that junk. It's just taking up CPU cycles, drive space, and making the computer take longer to boot.

    • by SternisheFan (2529412) on Friday November 15, 2013 @06:16PM (#45438691)
      Does it say "Norton" anywhere in the name? Uninstall!!!
    • That's why I always reinstall the OS first thing. Gets rid of manufacturer garbage, trial antivurus that leaves traces of itself, and a bizarre amount of bloat that seems to have come from nothing.

    • Almost all pre-loaded software on a major PC brand (excluding Apple) is crippleware.

      Not just pre-loaded software. Today I saw a poster in an internet newsgroup wanting to translate very old computer language X to newer computer language Y. Y is often used in an educational setting, particularly in physics, astronomy and math. I'm fluent in X and have used Y in the past, with some major gotchas. The previous version of Y misbehaved on Win XP. It would regularly GPF and graphic displays were mostly useless. I remembered that they offered a program to convert X to Y. It was compiled and it wa

  • In-Game Purchases (Score:5, Insightful)

    by Teckla (630646) on Friday November 15, 2013 @05:55PM (#45438433)

    The fastest way to get me to uninstall an app is in-game purchases (other than a one-time payment to purchase the full version straight up, with no further fees).

    Give me a lite version to evaluate it, then let me buy it straight up. I loathe and detest in-game purchases for gold, gems, or anything else necessary to continue a game, or to speed it up.

    • I pretty much avoid apps with any kind of in-app purchasing. If you think your app is worth the price of all the extra bits, well then allow me to buy the whole thing. I'm not interested in being nickeled and dimed to death for extra levels, abilities or features.

      • by perpenso (1613749) on Friday November 15, 2013 @07:26PM (#45439337)

        I pretty much avoid apps with any kind of in-app purchasing. If you think your app is worth the price of all the extra bits, well then allow me to buy the whole thing. I'm not interested in being nickeled and dimed to death for extra levels, abilities or features.

        I have two app, the full paid http://www.perpenso.com/calc/calc3.html [perpenso.com] app with various calculators built into a single app and a lite app where scientific (including fractions and complex numbers) is built-in but other modes such as statistics, business and hex are in-app purchases. The fully paid includes everything and there is no advertising and it is offered at a bundled price point, about 60% of the price of all the in-app purchases combined, equivalent to 3 of the available 5 in-apps. There are plenty of users who only purchase 1 or 2 of the in-apps.

        The problem as a developer is that some users only discover the lite app. I mention the fully paid app in the lite app's description and that it may offer a cost savings, yet there are a noticeable number of users who purchase all 5 individual in-app purchases. I don't think all of these users are trying to be supportive, that most just did not notice the fully paid bundled app.

        If I had done as you suggest and only offered the fully paid bundled version I may have lost many of the smaller sales. I'd be interested in hearing any suggestions. In the future I plan to again use this 2 app strategy of fully paid bundle priced and completely a-la-carte via in-app purchases. The difficulty seem to be in making potential users aware of both versions so that they can select the best fit.

        I don't think there is a one-size-fits-all single app solution. Am I missing something?

      • by Quirkz (1206400)

        This is getting me on Plants vs. Zombies 2. Some things you can unlock by playing, but unless I'm missing it, many of them you have to buy. Between the plants and the upgrades, they have $40 worth of items! That's not counting "coins" which you can also purchase - in amounts, and I kid you not, up to $100. Really? I've got to wonder if anyone's ever purchased that amount, except by accident.

        I'd be pretty happy to pay $10 to fully unlock this on my iPhone, which I think is what I paid for the original PvZ, b

  • by Anonymous Coward

    I uninstall things that install "services" or "autoupdate" crapware (Java, iTunes, and Google's apps all do this)
    I uninstall things that continue to run after I've closed them (Office suites, MMORPG launchers are guilty *glare NCSOFT*)
    I uninstall things that I have given up on (more games)
    I uninstall things that serve only a single purpose and that purpose has passed (data retrieval/recovery/formatting/rescue)

    My "core apps" on Windows or MacOS X are:
    VLC x64 or MPC x64 (I use both, latter more often because

  • by Flammon (4726)

    Bugs

  • Don't Need 'Em (Score:5, Informative)

    by bobdehnhardt (18286) on Friday November 15, 2013 @06:07PM (#45438583)

    Working infosec for a dozen years or so, I tend to harden things by default. I view any app on my system as a potential vulnerability, so if I don't need it or aren't using it, off it goes.

  • by symbolset (646467) * on Friday November 15, 2013 @06:12PM (#45438651) Journal
    An app that needs to update every week is not from a reliable developer. An app that wants attention every day is a pest. Freemium apps, apps that want me to install more apps or get "social" are lame. Also low value apps take precious space. Permissions creep is not OK.
    • I agree, but in particular, the frequent updates issue increases my odds of an uninstall because I notice a program updating that I don't use. If it's dormant, I may never notice.

      • by SternisheFan (2529412) on Friday November 15, 2013 @06:34PM (#45438931)
        Any downloaded app that re-spawns after I 'force stop' it (Android), or doesn't function unless it has a working internet connection.
    • by Dr. Manhattan (29720) <sorceror171@GIRA ... minus herbivore> on Friday November 15, 2013 @08:48PM (#45440031) Homepage

      An app that needs to update every week is not from a reliable developer.

      That's putting it a bit too strongly. I just put out my first app a few days ago, and I've already gotten useful user feedback and requests for new features. Plus, small developers don't have the equipment budget [techcrunch.com] to test the way larger companies do. (12 to 50 devices on a regular basis, with periodic tests on more.) Especially on a new app, there's going to be a period where things have to shake out.

      Or do you simply avoid any app that hasn't been around a while?

  • Biggest one for me is when a formerly paid app switches to being advertising base. What I've found is that even if they offer a way to remove the ads by paying again, or grandfather the original purchases into an ad free mode that the apps tend to suffer redesigns that are motivated to support advertisers and that many of these redesigns impact the use of the apps even for paid users. I've already uninstalled a bunch of apps for this reason, such as Quickoffice Pro, OneTap, etc. and have been considering uninstalling apps like The Weather Channel.

  • Any app that is a barnacle attached to an app I have installed, gets uninstalled by default. If it's so unwanted it has to be attached to another app, I don't want it on my machine by definition. This goes triple for toolbars, optimizers and "safe surf" plugins.

    Any app that pops up an advertisement.

    Any app that pops up any other message more than, say, once a month.

  • On iOS, if I decide I have too many apps for whatever reason, I will go through and anything I have not used for a while gets deleted.

    If an application just has something going on like too many notifications, I will usually just turn that off for the app.

    The other main point of deletion is if I launch the app for the first time and it annoys me for some reason or I can tell right away I'm not going to use it. Then out it goes.

  • 1) Unjustified self-importance: applications that, even when not running, insist on having daemons running for updates or whatever else. If it's not core to the utility if the application then just fuck off.

    2) Freebies that keep begging me to buy stuff. I'll either buy this or I'll take something for free. If the latter then don't be disingenuous.

    3) stuff I paid for that gives me adverts. I paid for this, so fuck off when you either decide to use DLC or adverts to repeatedly well me shit that interferes wit

  • It's kinda like playing whack-a-mole. I may install an app that seemed like a good idea at the time, and it might stay on my machine for years before I notice it and uninstall. But apps that piss me off get uninstalled, and nothing pisses me off more than an app that calls attention to itself. About the second or third time an app pops up with "you really want to be running the non-free version of this" or "there's a new feature that only costs..." or "We also offer..." it goes.

  • Sourceforge. (Score:5, Insightful)

    by ledow (319597) on Friday November 15, 2013 @06:19PM (#45438719) Homepage

    Bundling shite with them, like your sister site Sourceforge does.

    Other than that, if it survives a day, it stays on my computer forever. I never worry about disk space, and if I've downloaded something that fulfilled a purpose once, I keep it around in case I need it again.

    About the only apps I've "uninstalled" have been ones that lasted literally seconds after I realised that they bundled tons of unnecessary shit in their installers and/or weren't what I was after.

  • by T.E.D. (34228) on Friday November 15, 2013 @06:20PM (#45438745)

    ...I replace the entire phone instead.

    For the most part I don't ever uninstall an app. I get a new phone every year and a half or so, so why bother? If I don't use it, I just won't reinstall it on the new phone.

  • I downloaded the whip app. After I tried it out on my wife, I got a fat lip and so I uninstalled it immediately.

  • Reasons why I uninstall apps.

    1. Ads
    2. Ads with sound
    3. Ads with motion
    4. Ads that burn up bandwidth.

    I don't care how much I paid for them. Too many ads and you're GONE.

  • I may occasionally be looking for an app suitable to a particular task, and I'll find there may be a half dozen semi-"popular" options that I'll download and try, one after another.

    If I'm familiar with the software's operating domain, I may expect that I can open the app and figure out how to get my task done in fairly short order. If I can't, I hope there are menus that may give me a hint. Failing that, toolbar buttons; but some employ mystery meat navigation [wikipedia.org], with no text or hover-tooltips to indicate w

  • The KDE "search" functionality is a fine example. If there were any way to uninstall Nepomuk, I'd get rid of it in a heartbeat. But no, this useless piece of crap is so deeply embedded all you can do is disable it. But disabling doesn't actually get it to stop sucking CPU -- you have to autostart to run "tracker-control --terminate=miners" to *really* kill Nepomuk.

    The corpse is still rotting on my system, but it's dead now.

  • Another reason I uninstall apps is if they complain when I turn the phone or tablet on Airplane Mode, or demand to connect to the internet and keep bugging me about it.

    I have the wifi and cell off for a reason.

    If you can't cope with that - you're gone.

  • by AnalogDiehard (199128) on Friday November 15, 2013 @06:32PM (#45438883)
    Anything that interferes with base system functions gets the banhammer immediately.

    AOL was notorious for this years ago when the install process would replace most Windows DLLs with AOL-flavored ones. IT departments at work were pretty busy fixing computers.

    Today you can't install anything on work computers unless you are an engineer involved in software development. As of WIN7 they have locked down the computers. You can't even save data to the c: drive, you have to use a thumbdrive.

    I have a WinXP Netbook at home that I installed iTunes on. Over time the browsers stopped opening at all. IE, Mozilla, Firefox, Safari, none of them worked. I traced it to some iPod apps running in the background even though iTunes wasn't open. After I removed iTunes it worked a lot better.
  • You are asking what makes me uninstall apps, but I think the bigger question is, what makes me not uninstall apps. I don't install a lot of apps, and with most apps that I try out, I immediately remove them.

    There's a simple pattern to what makes me keep an app: It does something distinctly useful in a way that doesn't annoy me at all. If it crashes on me repeatedly, it's gone. If it doesn't integrate well into my OS or it conflicts with other apps, it's gone. If it's slow or hard to use, or confusing,

    • I agree w/ everything right up until the 2nd & 3rd Don't
      I think that's pretty extreme.

      Don't add nice wheels to your car
      Don't upgrade your Rotors...
      Don't change the colors of your house.

      FFS

      If not USING your PC is your idea of IT, I'm glad I dont' work w/ you!
      Me personally, like making the PC personalized. I don't need to be super Admin at work or anything, but I get pretty pissed at employers who utilize draconian GPs to lock down PCs that people sit at day in and day out. Somethings make work easier,

      • by lgw (121541)

        If not USING your PC is your idea of IT, I'm glad I dont' work w/ you!

        If there's one thing every IT guys hates, it's users. If they could block all users logins so they the equipment would remain pure, they would.

      • If not USING your PC is your idea of IT, I'm glad I dont' work w/ you!

        Using it and doing silly hacks and customizations are not the same thing. It's fun to compile all your Linux binaries with non-standard tweaks, reskin everything, and customize the hell out of your computer when you're 12 years old and just learning. When you really want computers to work reliably, you have to consider that every non-standard tweak is another chance for something stupid to go wrong. To a certain extent, it's a trade-off: hacks and customizations vs. stability and reliability. Sometimes

  • by neminem (561346) <.moc.liamg. .ta. .menimen.> on Friday November 15, 2013 @06:37PM (#45438963) Homepage

    * If I realize that it's been months and I've never actually used it
    * If I thought it would do something useful, I tried it, and I realized it didn't
    ** Or if I got it thinking it would even work at all, tried it, and it didn't. That's totally a thing.
    ** Or if I got it and it didn't crash all the time then, but it does now.
    ** Or if when I got it, it didn't constantly bug me, but after an update, now it does.
    * If I downloaded several apps to do something, then picked the best one and this wasn't it
    * If at the time it *was* the best app to do something, but then later someone made a better one
    * If, as mentioned, I got it for a particular trip, and that trip has now passed. Or I got it for a particular event, and the event is over.

  • by JAS0NH0NG (87634) on Friday November 15, 2013 @06:54PM (#45439095)

    Here's a link to our paper at KDD 2013 looking at why people hate your app [cmuchimps.org]. We crawled user comments on Google Play for about 100k apps, and then did some clustering and linear regressions to probe what people say when they give you low star ratings.

    It turns out that a lot of low ratings often come right after an update, when people find out that their app doesn't work anymore due to incompatibilities. We also found some odd anomalies, like people saying they love your app but gave you a 1 star rating. If you want the very short summary, jump to Table 6. We divided up the comments by app type. For example, for games, people tended to complain about (1) attractiveness, (2) stability, and (3) cost. For other categories, the complaints were less consistent.

  • so many apps have ancillary modules that sit in the background, sucking up RAM and CPU cycles. when I find one of these I always ask myself if I really use it. IF not, it's gone! boom. Constant updates are a real pain, too, but at least that can be turned off.
  • When endless 'upgrades' are nothing more than adding more tie ins to every god damn social media site out there.

    When the ads become too intrusive.

    On the laptop when they nag to go to the 'pro' version, even once.

    When the underlying website is pure nuclear bullshit to start with, like Netflix.

    When running a utility provides no real world benefit.

  • If an app doesn't need to be a service, then it shouldn't be running as a service. LED Light? Not a service, and I'm almost fed up with having to kill it every time I close Opera. I spend an outrageous amount of time killing things that I don't want running, and freeing RAM.

  • ...suddenly when they are patching themselves without any explanation why.

    Why does a simple puzzle game without multi-player support need access to my contacts? Uninstall...
    Et cetera...

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