Apple’s App Store rankings are continuing to be affected by an eight hour freeze on Friday, leading to unexpected changes in the charts.
According to TechCrunch, the ranking results remained unchanged between 10 am and 6 pm Eastern time on Friday, missing update intervals at 12pm and 3pm.
This led to large changes in app rankings, with historically highly-ranked apps dropping 10 spots rather than one.
In addition, some apps that were previously ranked in the top 20 have been unable to rank higher than 40.
According to The Register, the charts in the iTunes Store are still broken in the UK, US, Japan and much of Europe, with users receiving an error message.
However, the lists appear to be correct in the iOS App Store app.
It is unclear whether the rankings freeze was deliberate or whether it was a glitch related to a bug or bandwidth issues. Apple has only ever frozen rankings over holiday periods.
Among the possible reasons why Apple may have deliberately paused the service is to stop them fluctuating too wildly due to activity related to the rollout of iOS 7 and the availability of the iPhone 5s and 5c.
According to TechCrunch, it could also be related to testing of a new App Store algorithm with which Apple is trying to stop publishers from using automated methods to influence the charts.
Mobile app marketing company Fiksu suggested to TechCrunch that an alternative reason is that Apple was trying to limit an app marketing rush, as happens around holiday periods.