Apple announced yesterday that the App Store hit the much-anticipated 50 billion app downloads milestone:
Apple® today announced that customers have downloaded over 50 billion apps* from the revolutionary App Store℠. Customers are downloading more than 800 apps per second at a rate of over two billion apps per month on the App Store.
In iTunes on the desktop you can see a listing of the Top 25 All-Time Paid Apps and Free Apps, with separate listings for iPad apps and iPhone apps. There are no huge surprises in the iPad Top 25 list, but here’s a few things I find interesting:
— Skype for iPad is the Number 1 All-Time Free App. I think Skype’s iPad app is great, better than its desktop version – but I’m still a little surprised to see it right at the all-time chart.
— 10 of the Top 25 paid are not games, and 6 out of those 10 are Apple apps – Pages, Keynote, Numbers, GarageBand, iMovie, and iPhoto. Another reminder of the huge piles of money Microsoft is leaving on the table by not bringing Office to iOS.
— Facebook is Number 6 on the Top Free list – I’m a little surprised it’s not higher.
— Angry Birds HD and Angry Birds HD Free are the highest listed games in the Paid and Free lists.
Anyone want to start a pool on when downloads hit 100 billion?
If you’re looking for inspiration in choosing an app or apps to gift a mom in your life for Mother’s Day, then you may want to check out the Mother’s day Gift Guide featured section in the iPad App Store today.
The gift guide is made up entirely of apps and includes 9 sub-sections including:
Gifts for Foodies: Cookbook and culinary apps
Gifts for Photographers: Photo and video editing and effects apps
Gifts that Wow: An odd,eclectic section with apps ranging from iMovie to Star Walk and others about the universe around us
Apps for Kids and Games for Kids: Perhaps with the idea that a good set of distracting apps for the kiddos is a nice gift to help Mom get some relaxation in on Mother’s Day?
Gifts for Gamers and Gifts for Hardcore Gamers: For all the Gamer Moms.
It’s a good looking collection, with a lot of range to it. Even so, I ‘d say it’d be a good idea to make sure you’ve got some other gifts in store for the important mom/s in your life tomorrow – not *only* an app.
You can find the Mother’s Day Gift Guide in the Featured section of the App Store this week, right at the top among the rotating showcase app collections.
Apple Is Trying to Make Users More Aware of the Pitfalls of In-App Purchases
This week the iPad App Store has added a new section to help users understand In-App Purchases. The section is called Learn More About In-App Purchases and it’s included in the iPad App Store Featured area, in the section just below What’s Hot.
The new section provides a good, concise overview of In-App purchase, the different types of In-App purchases and how they work, and how to setup parental controls to disable the ability to make use of them.
Just a few weeks ago Apple made the ‘warning’ symbol for apps that contain In-App purchase options more prominent. It’s good to see their continuing efforts to raise awareness on this subject and try to avoid some of the sad stories we see so often where kids unwittingly rack up huge credit card bills for unsuspecting parents.
Last week Apple made some minor adjustments to the layout of iPad and iOS App Store pages. One of the more notable changes is in the way that age ratings for apps are presented – they’ve been made a little more prominent.
Age rating details are now displayed much higher up on the App Store window for individual apps – just below the app title and developer name. This follows closely on another recent update that made it easier to see which apps offer In-App purchases.
Now both of these bits of information – age rating and the indicator for apps with In-App purchase – are right up in the top section of the app window.
These changes should be good news for many iPad and iOS App Store users, and especially for parents.
One of this week’s featured collections in the iPad App Store is 10 Apps that Wow. Here’s the description of it:
From saving money on a last-minute hotel room to discovering the nether reaches of the cosmos, these apps offer truly awe-inspiring experiences. Each app is a bona fide conversation starter and as you progress through our top 10, you’ll find yourself increasingly amazed at what’s possible on your iPad.
It’s a great idea for a collection, and one Apple could consider running once a month on the iPad App Store. There are plenty of apps that fit the bill.
I’m especially fond of 3 of the picks in this collection: MLB’s At Bat, Brian Cox’s Wonders of the Universe, and the magnificent WWF Together. I’m also well aware of how great Paper by FiftyThree is, as I’ve seen the fantastic art produced with it and even shared some of it over at my iPad and iPhone Art site.
Here’s the full list of apps include in the 10 Apps that Wow collection: Paper by FiftyThree, Panna, Traktor DJ, MLB.com At Bat, The Orchestra, MyScript Calculator, Brian Cox’s Wonders of the Universe, Hotel Tonight, Foldify, WWF Together.
This collection is found among the top rotating items in the iPad App Store Featured section this week.
What do you all think of the collection? Any of your favorites in there?
After a number of recent headline stories about young children racking up huge bills with In-App purchases and Apple having to settle a class action lawsuit by parents relating to the iOS ‘freemium’ model. the iOS App Store now shows a sort of warning label on apps that offer In-App purchases.
For now, it’s a pretty innocuous little label just below the category and rating listing for an app in the iPad App Store. I think it could do with being a little more prominent, and perhaps even include the word ‘warning’ in front of it – or have a small symbol to indicate that it is a warning.
What do you all think? Is this label sufficient to make parents and kids aware or should the label be clearer?
It looks like the iOS 6.1 update has fixed the longstanding problem with the App Store Purchased section not loading. As I posted about recently this issue was affecting numerous users and was a known issue that Apple’s engineering team has been working on.
After the iOS 6.1 update I can once again load the Purchased section in the App Store on my iPad 3 and iPad mini. I can get both tabs of the section to load too – the All tab and ‘Not on This iPad’.
It still takes quite a while to load each page (a minute or more) and sometimes switching between tabs will make the App Store app crash back to the home screen – but most of the time it is working OK for me.
For those of you who were seeing this problem before, what are your results when trying this after the iOS 6.1 update?
We’re only 8 days away from what looks like a great Super Bowl XLVII. And the iPad App Store is featuring Super Bowl apps and games this week.
The selection of apps and games for this Super Bowl focused section is not huge. There are only 10 selections – 5 apps and 5 games – but it’s a good selection. It includes a couple of official NFL apps (one that’s a guide to this year’s game) and some fun games. NFL Quarterback is a particular favorite of mine.
You can check out this new topical section by opening the App Store and going to the Featured area – it’s one of the rotated featured sections at the top of this page.
Have you got any favorite NFL related iPad apps or games?
Have you had problems getting the App Store Purchased section to load on your iPad? Spent time staring at a screen like the one shown above just saying ‘Loading’ for a long while and then the App Store app crashes back to the home screen? Me too. On both my iPad mini and my iPad 3 for at least several weeks now.
I’ve rebooted the iPads more than once, hard rebooted them, and signed out and back in to my Apple ID account in the App Store. I’ve also searched and noted that there are numerous threads on this issue – here’s just one example: https://discussions.apple.com/thread/4313321?start=15&tstart=0.
So today I decided to call Apple Support about it. I’ll offer full details below, but the short story is that Apple’s Engineering team is aware of the issue and is working on a number of reported cases. Mine was ‘escalated’ and added to those cases this morning. The issue appears to be with those of us who have what an Apple senior advisor called an ‘extensive purchase history’ when it comes to iPad and iOS apps. My purchase history shows 1,212 iPad apps and 1,276 iPhone apps – so it looks like I qualify.
The only suggested workaround right now is to open up iTunes on a PC and sync any apps you previously purchased and want to get back onto your iPad or other iDevice.
Apple announced a set of staggering numbers for their App Store today. The headline number is 40 billion. 40 billion app downloads that is, and that’s unique downloads too – not counting updates or re-downloads.
An even more striking number is this one: there were nearly 20 billion downloads in 2012 alone.
Another impressive and iPad-specific number is 333,789. That’s the number of native iPad apps currently available. Apple announced that there are more than 300,000 – that more precise figure comes via Appshopper.com.
Apple’s press release on these numbers highlights the success of a number of iOS app publishers – from a husband and wife team to some of the big outfits who have had incredible results on the App Store, such as Autodesk:
“Our success on iOS has been incredible,” said Samir Hanna, vice president of Consumer Products for Autodesk. “We set off with the modest goal of bringing SketchBook to iPhone users as a way of introducing them to Autodesk. Fast forward three years, we now offer 20 apps to iOS users that have achieved more than 50 million downloads, and we continue to roll out new creativity and design tools that appeal to both professionals and consumers.”
It’s long been held that ‘apps make the platform’ and the superb scope and quality of apps available for the iPad continues to be a major reason why it’s such a killer device.
When iOS 6 came out it removed the ability to gift an app directly from the iPad or any iOS device – so you had to got to iTunes on a desktop PC to use the feature.
A recent update to the App Store has brought back this handy little feature. Now we can gift apps directly from the iPad (or iPhone) easily again. There are even a couple of nice new options to go along with gifting an app on the iPad.
Here’s a quick run-through of how to gift an app on the iPad, and those two new options you can use:
— Open the App Store app
— Tap the app you would like to gift, so that you see the popover page for it.
— Tap the Share button at the top right of that app page. That will bring up the sharing options as shown in the screenshot above.
— Tap on ‘Gift’