Apple App Store Hits 1.5 Billion Downloads

By Michelle Maisto  |  Posted 2009-07-14 Print this article Print

The Apple App Store has passed 1.5 billion downloads, Apple announced July 14. Google, Nokia, Microsoft, Palm and BlackBerry are all racing to build their app inventories, but none come close to Apple's success. "It's going to be very hard for others to catch up," said Steve Jobs in a statement.

Apple has announced that, in just one year, customers have downloaded more than 1.5 billion applications from its App Store. According to Apple, the App Store currently has more than 65,000 apps and more than 100,000 developers in the iPhone Developer Program.
"The App Store is like nothing the industry has ever seen before in both scale and quality," said Apple CEO Steve Jobs in a July 14 statement to mark the download milestone. "With 1.5 billion apps downloaded, it is going to be very hard for others to catch up."
Indeed. While critics have praised the Palm Pre, they're quick to point out that a trove of applications is now as important an offering as a feature-rich smartphone. Palm's App Catalogue is ever so slowly building up, however, and on June 24 it passed 1 million downloads, 19 days after its debut.
Google has its Android Market application store, Nokia has the Ovi Store, Microsoft opened a Windows Marketplace for Mobile store and in April Research In Motion's BlackBerry App World went live. But combined, their inventories don't come close to Apple's App Store.
To run the numbers: Apple additionally reports that it has shipped more than 40 million devices that run apps from the App Store, and these are used by tens of millions of people in 77 countries.
How many of those 65,000 apps are actually relevant or useful, is topic of continual debate. And, with so many developers interested in creating content, whether or not to sell some controversial apps has also become an issue for Apple.
The App Store passed 1 million downloads on April 23, back when it had 25,000 apps on offer. The 13-year-old from Connecticut who downloaded the 1 millionth app - Bump, an app that lets users bump their phones together, to exchange information - won a MacBook Pro, a $10,000 iTunes gift card, an iPod Touch and a Time Capsule.
The Time Capsule, not recommended for burying in the backyard, instead offers automatic, wireless back-up for Macs. It's available in 500GB and 1TB models.  

Michelle Maisto has been covering the enterprise mobility space for a decade, beginning with Knowledge Management, Field Force Automation and eCRM, and most recently as the editor-in-chief of Mobile Enterprise magazine. She earned an MFA in nonfiction writing from Columbia University, and in her spare time obsesses about food. Her first book, The Gastronomy of Marriage, if forthcoming from Random House in September 2009.

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