Call of Duty Elite apps released, fail app programming on every level possible

cod elite 1 - for some reason we don't have an alt tag here

Sometimes when playing Call of Duty you just end up wondering what idiot programmed certain features in the game. It’s inevitable that even after two years of development, a game requires more fixes and patches once released than a car ever does in its lifetime. When I see the new Call of Duty Elite apps released for Android and iOS however, I’m starting to wonder if there’s more to it than just the odd bug that wasn’t caught in time, as this is likely one of the absolute worst major app releases in Android and iOS history.

To start at the beginning, the Elite service is a statistical back end system tied in with Call of Duty, allowing you to interact with elements of the game that don’t involve actually playing it. Change your classes, check how well you’re doing, what your friends are doing etc. That’s all fine, except for perhaps the fact that half the statistics from Black Ops were removed in Modern Warfare 3, but that’s a discussion for another site. Anyways, the Elite service is meant to be available outside the game, so mobile apps were a given from the start. Now these apps are out for both iOS and Android, but that’s where the good news end.

First off, the apps are phone optimized only. On the iPad, that means it’s an enlarged iPhone app. On Android, that should normally have meant a perhaps slightly stretched-looking app, but because of the way the app is made – completely ignoring Android’s scaling features – it only displays in a certain resolution, making the app show in a tiny corner of the screen on tablets. The Android 3.2+ feature that lets you zoom apps that act this way also doesn’t work (at least not on my 7.0 Plus) so you’re left with what’s essentially a tiny widget sized app.

cod elite 2 - for some reason we don't have an alt tag here

The failures don’t end there, as the app uses its own interface elements which don’t look native to iOS, which makes this look like a web page more than anything else. That doesn’t really matter, except for the fact that they forgot to put navigation buttons in parts of the app, so if you e.g. enter class customization then you have to go through all steps to get anywhere. You can’t go back if you selected something wrong, and you can’t exit if you didn’t want to be in there at all.

On Android, it’s even worse. As if the scaling issue wasn’t enough of an indication that the company that made this app has no clue how Android works, the app also doesn’t support Android’s hardware/software buttons. There’s no menu button, and the back button does absolutely nothing. You’re left with exactly the same “proprietary” buttons as on iOS, and a bunch of hardware/software buttons that do nothing.

To round off the failure, whoever submitted the app to the Android Market apparently can’t fill in whatever form is used to do so. While the iOS app is available in the countries where Elite itself is available, the Android app is not. Why? Probably not intentionally, that’s for sure.

Call of Duty games always break various records when they’re released, and draw in billions in revenue. The new Elite service has a paid side which helps that even more, so when I see these disaster apps being released to the public I can’t help but wonder who in Thor’s name is running those companies. I would understand these kinds of issues in apps released by 14 year olds who like to program in their free time, not from a game franchise like Call of Duty.

[iTunes | Android Market]

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Andreas Ødegård

Andreas Ødegård is more interested in aftermarket (and user created) software and hardware than chasing the latest gadgets. His day job as a teacher keeps him interested in education tech and takes up most of his time.

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