eBay upgraded its mobile apps for iPhone, iPad and Android apps on Wednesday, but it’s too early to tell if users will find the new iPad update more palatable than the last one it launched in December, which saw a stream of complaints from users.
In this week’s announcement, eBay Director of Mobile Product Dave Cheng referenced the December update for the eBay for iPad app, saying the company had reignited its mobile commerce strategy with the redesign – though he didn’t mention the mostly negative reviews it had garnered.
But Cheng’s comments were an understatement. In December, eBay Marketplaces President Devin Wenig had called the iPad app redesign one eBay’s most important product launches in recent years.
Cheng wrote this week, “Today, I’m happy to announce the latest updates to our iPhone, iPad and Android apps. We are constantly integrating feedback from customers, and I’m inspired by the progress we continue to make. Today we are delivering a modest, but important set of improvements for both the buyer and seller experience.”
Of the iPad app, Cheng wrote, “We have made it easier for buyers to easily keep tabs on their favorite Searches, Recently Viewed Items, Watched Items and Members & Collections,” and he said “Following” was now more personalized.
Among the complaints we heard about the December redesign of eBay for iPad app were the following from three different readers:
“Since upgrading eBay’s app on my IPad my saved searches will not include worldwide. So if you want to search for newly listed, worldwide on your saved searches you have to reprogram these features. Interesting at the difficulty to view your saved searches! This not the only thing I dislike about the upgraded app.”
“They have forced a useless app on everyone and seem to be happy with users just deleting it and leaving eBay than allowing them to use the perfectly fine prior version v3.3.3.”
“eBay recently updated the iPad app and it is getting trashed on the app store in the reviews. It should get trashed it is the worst update I have ever seen from any company ever. You might want to read a few reviews and do a report – there are so many bad/missing features compared to the old version it is hard to list them all. One thing I personally miss is when you are scanning through a search items you are watching used to be highlighted with a blue bar, now you have to click an item to see if you are watching it.”
As we noted in our December coverage of the then newly redesigned eBay for iPad app, it received an average rating of 1.5 out of 5 stars from 1750 ratings compared to 4.5 stars for all versions from 112,004 ratings.
As of Thursday evening, the latest version launched Wednesday received an average rating of 2.5 out of 5 stars.
We checked in with some of the users we heard from in December to see what they thought of the new iPad update, and found it got mixed reviews.
“It is not what eBay users want,” said one reader. “It is a bandaid on the worst rated app in the App Store. It does not solve the problems caused by the original update which basically turned the eBay auction site into an Amazon like shopping site. eBay users want eBay back. The new version 3.4.1 is still terrible. It just needs time to build up its negative rating. The only thing that can improve the problems is to restore back to the pre Dec 2014 update altogether.”
He also pointed to the eBay Mobile section of a site called GetSatisfaction. “There are many well written posts there that explain the frustration. This is a site set up by eBay to communicate with its users. The lack of responses by eBay is disheartening to say the least.”
A second reader who had been unaware of this week’s update until we contacted her tried it and responded, “Yep!! This is GREAT. Thank you!!! Now I have my searches back including newly listed and worldwide!!”
eBay wrote in the iTunes store notes for the iPad app that Version 3.4.1 (posted on March 11, 2015) was a quick update to provide more direct access to key search, buying, and selling functions. “We are continuing to advance the capability for future updates to follow.” Specifically for sellers: Selling is now accessible from anywhere in the app, and it added the familiar color-coded status indicators along with Watching/Bidding information “so you can easily check how your listings are doing.”
eBay also wrote in its update notes on the app store, “We are fast at work bringing more exciting functionality to eBay for iPad. Watch for future updates. Your feedback is important to us. Please continue to share it and reach out to us with any questions.”
In keeping with eBay’s focus on international sales and cross-border trade, Cheng said eBay also added some enhancements to make it easier for global buyers “to purchase from the comfort of their mobile devices.” The eBay apps are available in eight languages across 190 countries, and among the changes for both the iPhone and Android apps are support for eBay’s PaisaPay payment service in India and payment support in Russia; as well as local capabilities with “buy online, pickup-in-store” options in Australia.
You can find eBay’s announcement about the new updates for the eBay mobile apps on this page.