Instapaper developer Marco Arment pointed out yesterday that there’s been something amiss with some app updates downloaded from the iOS and Mac App Stores for the last couple of days and the problem still persists. According to Arment, app binaries (the bundle of files that make up an app that developers submit to Apple for distribution) are somehow being corrupted on Apple’s end and when users go to open these apps, they will crash on launch and will not open.
Here’s a list of issues directly from Arment’s post that users might experience:
- The app crashes immediately on launch, every time, even after a delete and reinstall as long as the corrupt file is being served by the App Store.
- It doesn’t even show the Default.png before crashing. Just a split-second of a partial fade to black, then back to Springboard.
- It may only affect customers in some regions.
- If updating from iTunes, some customers might get a dialog citing error 8324 or 8326.
- Mac apps might show this dialog:“[App] is damaged and can’t be opened. Delete [App] and download it again from the App Store.”
- The console might show: AppleFairplayTextCrypterSession::fairplayOpen() failed, error -42110
Arment notes that this problem seems to be occurring primarily for app updates and not new apps just released to the App Store, and this may only be affecting users in certain areas. He’s compiled a list of apps affected, which contains more than 70 apps at the time of this post including some prominent ones like his own Instapaper and even Angry Birds Space Free.
If you downloaded an app update recently and are experiencing some of the issues Arment describes, please keep this issue in mind and refrain from writing a negative app review based solely on this experience. From what can be told so far, this is not the fault of any of the developers and I urge you to not take it out on them with a negative review. So far, Apple has not publicly responded to these reports though the company appears to be addressing the problem on an app-by-app basis when alerted. If you’re an app developer, you may wish to heed Arment’s warning to avoid releasing an update for your app until this has been resolved.
UPDATE: Apple told AllThingsD yesterday that this issue has been fixed, saying in a statement to the publication, “We had a temporary issue that began yesterday with a server that generated DRM code for some apps being downloaded.” To remedy any affected apps, users are encouraged to simply re-download the app from the App Store.