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This article was published on August 11, 2012

App developers: Sending your users “test” push notifications is annoying, so don’t do it

App developers: Sending your users “test” push notifications is annoying, so don’t do it
Drew Olanoff
Story by

Drew Olanoff

Drew Olanoff was The Next Web's West Coast Editor. He coined the phrase "Social Good" and invented the "donation by action" model for onlin Drew Olanoff was The Next Web's West Coast Editor. He coined the phrase "Social Good" and invented the "donation by action" model for online charitable movements. He founded #BlameDrewsCancer. You can follow him on Twitter, Google+, Facebook, or email [email protected]

If you’re a mobile device user, you know how wonderful push notifications can be. Without having to open an app, you can see if someone replied to your witty Tweet or if you have a meeting coming up.

However, notifications can also be annoying, especially if sent “accidentally.” Today, the popular Tap Tap Revenge game sent out three tests in a row that looked something like this:

Naturally, I went to Twitter to complain and saw that others got the push notifications as well. The @TapTapRevenge account on Twitter spit this out:

Um, yeah that’s not going to be good enough. There are ways to test push notifications in a way that doesn’t affect your global userbase. Of course, by annoying your users, you just brought up your DAU (daily active user) numbers. I opened the app just to see what the notification meant. The developer, in this case Disney, gets to count me as an active user for the day.

Fail.

I understand that mistakes happen, but when you’re working for a huge company and have a pretty sizable userbase, there’s really no excuse for this. The fact that push notifications get misused is why a lot of people turn them off, and that’s not good for anyone.

Developers, don’t test in production please.