Apple's App Store Passes 1.5 Billion Downloads
With more than 65,000 applications, Apple's mobile program store is far ahead of similar stores from Google, Nokia, Research In Motion, and Microsoft.
Apple's App Store has eclipsed its rivals in terms of volume; its users have downloaded more than 1.5 billion applications in about a year.
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The over-the-air program store has been a hit with consumers, and this has made the platform attractive to mobile developers. Apple said the store now has more than 65,000 apps, and more than 10,000 content creators are in its iPhone Developer Program. The store is filled with programs that range from fake beer pouring apps to enterprise-grade programs from Oracle and Salesforce.
With more than 1,000 new hooks into the hardware, the latest firmware potentially opens the door for a new wave of, innovative apps. Additionally, the 3.0 software creates new business models for developers because it enables in-app purchasing, and app-specific hardware accessories.
"The App Store is like nothing the industry has ever seen before in both scale and quality," said Apple CEO Steve Jobs in a statement. "With 1.5 billion apps downloaded, it is going to be very hard for others to catch up."
The popularity of the App Store has caused Apple's mobile rivals to launch their own solutions for letting users browse, buy, download, and install apps over the air. It may be even tougher for the competition to catch up because of the App Store's momentum, but rivals are taking different approaches to carve out market share.
Google has said its Android Market will be more open than Apple's store, which has faced some criticism over its vetting process. Nokia will be integrating location and social networking into its catalog size, but it is focusing on a more premium experience. Microsoft has yet to launch its Windows Marketplace for Mobile, but the store is expected to be rolled out by the fourth quarter.
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