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?
Prices for refurbished iPad 3rd gen models have dropped significantly at the Apple online store. You can now get a 16GB WiFi + Cellular model for $409. The top of the line 64GB WiFi + Cellular refurb model is just $579.
Just as a quick reference point, the iPad 3rd gen was released in March of 2012 and the original price for that 64GB model was $829.
These refurb units generally come with the same one year warranty as new models and I’ve had very good experiences with buying refurb units from Apple.
If you’re looking for an iPad for yourself or a friend or loved one, it’s well worth taking a look at these deals at Apple’s Refurbished iPad 3 page.
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.
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Tim Cook did a lengthy interview at AllThingsD’s D10 conference last night, and of course he had lots of interesting things to say about many of Apple’s leading products. He had plenty of interesting things to say on the subject of tablets as well.
When Walt Mossberg asks him about Windows tablets due out later this year and mentions how Micosoft’s vision of them is as a sort of continuum from the PC – and that some of them will be ‘just tablets’, some will be clamshell from, some will turn around to make them a tablet, Cook responds that in his view the tablet and the PC are different and adds:
You can do things with the tablet if you’re not encumbered by the legacy of the PC, if you view it as different.
He also mentions that if you pull over too much of the ‘leg weight’ of the PC market then maybe you end up with something not too far off the tablet of ten years ago. And of course that’s the sort of tablet that never gained any traction with users and never had any great market impact.
Cook also talks about how Apple did not invent the tablet – but quickly adds ‘”We invented the modern tablet”.
The whole video is well worth watching, and I think Cook’s points are very well made, and to me suggest that Microsoft still doesn’t really ‘get’ the tablet arena they’re about to enter.
So let’s step back and look at the bigger picture here. Today Apple unveiled the 3rd generation iPad. This brought lots of things that we were expecting. We wished for and got a Retina display, ultrafast speed via 4G LTE, a better camera (5 megapixels) and a faster chip (A5X). We also got a few things that were not really expecting, like an iLife refresh featuring iPhoto for iOS, HD video recording and Dictation (note: no Siri).
What we did not get was a name. Despite two divergent theories heading into the announcement today, it was neither hailed as the iPad 3 nor the iPad HD. It’s simply called the new iPad. Not even “n” capitalized. [click to continue reading…]