Apple App Store celebrates fifth birthday


Five years in business and still going strong, but can it continue?

Apple's App Store is five years old today, Wednesday 10 July. Apple announced recently that the store has experienced over 50 billion app downloads in that time.

In May this year Apple announced that users had downloaded 50 billion apps from the store. Customers are downloading more than 800 apps per second at a rate of over two billion apps per month on the App Store, Apple stated at the time.

The App Store opened in July 2008 with 500 apps. It now offers more than 900,000 apps to iPhone, iPad and iPod touch users in 155 countries around the world, with more than 350,000 native iPad apps available.

However, app development is not an easy business; recent research from eBay shows that 64% of apps that started development were never finished or were rejected by app stores. This failure rate accounts for around £3.19 billion of development costs globally.

The average price of a basic app costs £12,000, with more advanced apps coming in at an estimated £55,000, eBay's research states. Additionally, app updates can be expensive; overhauls to cope with new devices and major operating system upgrades can cost up to 42% of the original development cost, while even basic and partial updates can cost around 17% of the initial outlay, said eBay.

Smart Chimps thinks: To make it through another five happy years, Apple definitely needs to pick up its game. The competition out there is hotting up and many already say Apple has been surpassed technologically by rivals. Without the visionary Steve Jobs at the helm, Apple seems to have stalled slightly in its innovation stakes, and Android is the ever present challenger in operating system popularity contests. It's going to be an interesting one to watch over the next two years, especially, as the likes of Samsung and operating systems such as Android and the growing Windows Phone push harder than ever. 


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