App Store

The App Store is Apple's digital software distribution platform for iOS devices. First introduced in 2008, the App Store allows software developers to distribute content that has been created specifically for the iPad, iPhone, and iPod touch. Apps are also available on the Apple Watch through the iOS App Store.

There are well over a million apps in the App Store, and customers have downloaded more than 100 billion apps since the App Store debuted. App Store apps are available with three pricing options: free (and usually supported by ads), free with in-app purchases, or a set cost starting at $0.99 in the US.

In 2010, Apple introduced the Mac App Store for distributing content on Macs, and in 2015, Apple introduced the tvOS App Store, an app store for to the fourth-generation Apple TV.

'App Store' Articles

Apple Announces Video Creation iOS App 'Clips'

Among announcements of a new 9.7-inch iPad and red iPhone 7, Apple today has unveiled a new first-party video creation app called "Clips." According to the company, with Clips users will be able to "create expressive videos" with ease on both an iPhone and iPad. The app lets users combine videos, images, and music into one seamless video that can then be shared through iMessages, and on other social media platforms like Facebook and Instagram. Users will be able to create animated captions called "Live Titles" using only their voice, and apply effects including comic book filters, speech bubbles, shapes and full-screen animated posters. “Clips gives iPhone and iPad users a new way to express themselves through video, and it’s incredibly easy to use,” said Susan Prescott, Apple’s vice president of Apps Product Marketing. “The effects, filters and amazing new Live Titles we’ve designed for Clips let anyone make great-looking, easily sharable videos with just a few taps.” Users can record content directly within Clips, or add in video and photos from the Photo Album. Clips isn't out just yet, but users will be able to get their hands on Apple's new app beginning this April on iOS devices running iOS 10.3. Last summer, it was rumored that Apple was working on a new video-sharing social network app which would include shooting, editing, and uploading videos "in less than one minute." With today's reveal of Clips, it appears that Apple decided to nix the social network side of that app and focus instead on tools to fuel user creativity that can be shared

Apple Adds Permanent Indie Games Section to App Store, Offers Discounts

Last week, Apple added an indie games section to the App Store to promote the huge range of games made by smaller developers. As it turns out, the indie games section is a permanent addition to the App Store, and will be available indefinitely to help users discover new titles to play. Love the games we’ve debuted? Starting today, we’ll have a permanent spot on the App Store just for indie games. https://t.co/M7fhi8kU4D pic.twitter.com/d9Nt98EGvw— App Store Games (@AppStoreGames) March 17, 2017 As of this week, the indie games section includes sections like "Our 25 favorite indie games," "Indie game debuts," and "Newly discovered indies." There's also a list of popular indie titles on sale for $0.99, including Road Not Taken, VVVVVV, Surgeon Simulator, Bicolor, Sorcery 3, The Room Two, Prune, Botanicula, and more. Indie adventure title Oxenfree has been named the editor's choice indie app of the week, and it is available for $3.99 (20 percent off) to celebrate its launch. Also free this week is popular indie platformer Bean's Quest, which has been named Apple's App of the Week. It will be available for download at no cost until next Thursday. [Direct Link] The addition of a dedicated indie games storefront in the App Store should make it easier for indie developers, who often struggle to compete with major game companies with unlimited funds, to have their games recognized and discovered by

The Average iPhone User in the U.S. Spent $40 on Apps in 2016

iPhone owners in the United States spent an average of $40 on premium apps and in-app purchases on each of their devices in 2016, according to new data shared by analytics company Sensor Tower. That's up from an average of $35 in 2015. Unsurprisingly, most iPhone users are spending their money on games. 80 percent of U.S. App Store revenue in 2016 was generated by games, and on average, iPhone users spent $27 on game-related content. Spending on apps in the entertainment category - such as Netflix and Hulu - was at $2.30 on average, compared to $1.00 in 2015, perhaps due to Netflix starting to offer in-app subscription options at the end of 2015. According to Sensor Tower, Netflix contributed over $58 million in gross revenue to the entertainment category in 2016, up from $7.9 million in 2015. Average spending on music also rose slightly in 2016, from $3.40 to $3.60, and social networking went from $1.80 to $2.00. Spending on apps in the photo and video category jumped from $0.30 to $0.70 during 2016. While spending on apps is up across the board, Sensor Tower saw a decline in the average number of apps installed on each iPhone - 33, down from 35 in 2015. Games continues to be the most popular app category, with an average of 10 games installed on each iPhone. According to Sensor Tower, its estimates are based on data pulled from 132 million active iPhones in the United States during the 2016 calendar year (January 1 to December 31). The numbers use estimates from Consumer Intelligence Research Partners and the company's own Store Intelligence platform.

Children's Organic Storybook 'Green Riding Hood' is Apple's Free App of the Week

Apple is currently promoting interactive children's storybook Green Riding Hood as its Free App of the Week on the iOS App Store. Notable for its hand-drawn artwork, the app by Bobaka introduces kids of ages 5 and under to a healthy lifestyle in a cheery spin-off of the original folk tale. The "organic fairytale" revolves around the bucolic daily life and escapades of a little girl, her grandma, a host of cute-looking animal friends, and a hungry wolf, but parents can rest assured, no-one gets eaten. Apple's App Store editors have this to say: Recasting Grandma as an herbal tea-sipping yoga teacher is just one of the fun ways this gorgeous storybook encourages kids to develop healthy habits. (You'll love Bobaka's take on the big, not-so-bad Wolf, too.) We're having a ball exploring each interactive page, and the app's tasty vegetarian recipes make great projects for the whole family.Alongside the friendly narrative elements and grandma's cookbook, Green Riding Hood features a series of mini games to keep kids engaged and a voiceover by Scottish actor Alistair Findlay, known for roles in such movies as Highlander and In the Name of the Father, as well as for narration in the acclaimed Nighty Night HD series of kids' apps. Usually $2.99, Green Riding Hood supports multiple languages and is currently a free download for iPhone and iPad available on the App Store. [Direct Link]

76 Popular Apps Vulnerable to Data Interception, Warns iOS Security Researcher

At least 76 popular iOS apps have been found to be vulnerable to data inception, according to a report from a security expert. The discovery was made by app binary code scanning service verify.ly and published in a Medium post by Sudo Security Group CEO Will Strafach, who revealed that the apps failed to make use of the Transport Layer Security protocol. The TLS protocol secures communication between client and server. Without the protection, the apps are susceptible to data interception by an attacker with access to custom hardware such as modified smartphone, which can be used to initiate TLS certificate injection attacks. The interception is possible regardless of whether the developers chose to use Apple networking security feature, App Transport Security. The truth of the matter is, this sort of attack can be conducted by any party within Wi-Fi range of your device while it is in use. This can be anywhere in public, or even within your home if an attacker can get within close range. There is no possible fix to be made on Apple's side, because if they were to override this functionality in attempt to block this security issue, it would actually make some iOS applications less secure as they would not be able to utilize certificate pinning for their connections, and they could not trust otherwise untrusted certificates which may be required for intranet connections within an enterprise using an in-house PKI. Therefore, the onus rests solely on app developers themselves to ensure their apps are not vulnerable.Apps in the vulnerable list included a number of

Apple Services Revenue Up 18% on App Store Growth

During today's earnings call for the first fiscal quarter of 2017 (fourth calendar quarter), Apple announced that its services revenue is up an impressive 18.4 percent year-over-year. Services brought in $7.17 billion during the quarter, up from $6 billion in the year-ago quarter. Services revenue now nearly matches Mac revenue, which was at $7.24 billion. The "Services" category includes the App Store, Apple Music, Apple Pay, iTunes, and iCloud, with continued growth largely attributed to the App Store. As was previously announced, the App Store saw its single best month ever in December of 2016, with $3 billion in app purchases alone. Developers have now earned more than $60 billion through the App Store, with $20 billion earned in 2016 alone. Revenue from Apple Music has continued to grow for the third quarter in a row, and AppleCare and iCloud saw all time record revenue results. As for Apple Pay, usage tripled over the course of 2016 and hundreds of millions of transactions were conducted in December alone. Transaction volume is up more than 500 percent year over year and more than two million small businesses accept it. Apple says Comcast will begin accepting Apple Pay later this month. As he has said in the past, Cook expects the services category to reach the size of a Fortune 100 company this year, and Apple's goal is to double it within the next four

iOS 10.3 Beta Says 32-Bit Legacy Apps Will Not Work With Future Versions of iOS

Since iOS 10.1, when a user opens an old 32-bit app on a newer iPhone, iPad, or iPod touch, Apple has reinstated a warning that the app may slow down the device until the developer updates it to improve its compatibility. The apps are still fully usable, however, despite the possible performance issues. On iOS 10.3 beta, Apple has tweaked the wording of that warning to note that 32-bit apps "will not work with future versions of iOS," suggesting that iOS 11 could be the first software update to support 64-bit apps only. "Future versions" is unsurprisingly vague, however, so the exact timeline remains unclear. Apple has supported 64-bit apps since the iPhone 5s launched in September 2013. The company required that all new apps support 64-bit architecture as of February 2015, and all updated apps since June 2015, but a number of older 32-bit apps that have not been updated in years remain available on the App Store. iOS devices with a 64-bit chip include the iPhone 5s and newer, iPad Air and newer, iPad mini 2 and newer, and sixth-generation iPod touch. In September, Apple said it would begin removing problematic and abandoned apps from the App Store, including those that no longer function as intended or follow current review guidelines, and others lacking compatibility updates for a long time. By October, it was reported some 50,000 apps had already been

Flappy Bird Creator Launches New Game 'Ninja Spinki Challenges!!' on iOS App Store

Dong Nguyen, creator of the popular iOS game Flappy Bird, today launched an all-new game on the iOS App Store and Google Play Store called Ninja Spinki Challenges!! [Direct Link] (via TouchArcade). The game is a collection of six mini-games that task users with completing a set of trials centered around training to become a ninja. TouchArcade went hands-on with the game earlier this week, and noted that while it's a "kinder" entry in comparison to the difficulty of Flappy Bird, it can "quickly become tough as nails." I had the chance to try the game a little bit ahead of its release, and while it's certainly a little more polished than Nguyen's previous titles, Spinki's got its creator's fingerprints all over it. The main character is drawn from the cast of Swing Copters, and the gameplay focuses on performing relatively simple actions in increasingly challenging circumstances. At the same time, this is a kinder, gentler game than Nguyen's previous releases, at least initially. After a boom of social media attention surrounding Flappy Bird back in 2014, Nguyen quickly removed the game from the App Store because he believed it became an "addictive product" for all of the players devoted to beating their high scores. The game's popularity reached such heights that Apple began rejecting apps on the App Store with "Flappy" in the title, because they were attempting to "leverage a popular app" to gain success. The drama surrounding the game began in the first half of 2014, and in August of that year Nguyen released a spiritual successor to Flappy Bird called Swing

Apple Support App Now Available in 22 Countries

The official Apple Support app for iPhone and iPad launched in additional countries this week, including but not limited to Belgium, France, Germany, Spain, Switzerland, and the United Kingdom. The app first launched in the Netherlands in November and expanded to the United States last month. The app mirrors Apple's support website, providing users with a list of their Apple devices, options to receive support by phone, chat, or email, and the ability to schedule a Genius Bar appointment or repair with an Apple Authorized Service Provider. The app also features how-to articles and other helpful information. The app is now available in 22 countries around the world as planned: Australia Belgium Brazil Canada France Germany Hong Kong Ireland Italy Japan Liechtenstein Macau Mexico Netherlands Singapore Spain Sweden Switzerland Turkey United Arab Emirates United Kingdom United StatesApple Support is a free download on the App Store [Direct Link] for iPhone and

Apple Celebrates Australia Day on App Store

Apple has updated the App Store in Australia to mark the beginning of celebrations for the country's national holiday Australia Day, which takes place annually on January 26. The landing page for the iOS App Store now sports a collection of apps and categories that highlight Australia's green and gold national colors. The update includes an emphasis on in-game additions with Australia Day-themed add-ons, as well as general promotions taking place in certain apps. Gaming apps involved in the celebrations include Clash of Clans, Torque Burnout, Marvel Contest of Champions, Asphalt Xtreme, and more. Non-gaming apps have also been rounded up for Australia Day, including DocPlay, which notes that a collection of Australian-centric documentaries are free for a limited time within the app. Apple has given the App Store a celebratory overhaul in the past, last year encouraging users to get involved in its Apps for Earth and World AIDS Day campaigns by promoting apps that forwarded proceeds to relevant causes. When looking back on 2016 at the beginning of the new year, Apple announced that App Store developers made $20 billion in 2016, which the company said was up 40 percent from 2015. (Thanks, Stuart!)

Apple Offers More Details About Upcoming App Store Review Policy Changes

Yesterday, Apple announced it was introducing new App Store review features in iOS 10.3 and macOS Sierra 10.12.4 that would allow developers to respond to customer reviews for the first time. A few more details of note have emerged from Apple since then, courtesy of The Loop's Jim Dalrymple and Daring Fireball's John Gruber. Speaking to Gruber, Apple said that developer responses to App Store reviews will show up in the store as a single response, but rather than having threaded conversations appear, customers will be able to edit their reviews and developers will be able to edit their replies. Notably, iOS users can now use 3D Touch to label reviews left in the App Store as "Helpful", something that couldn't be done before. Currently, App Store review rating averages are reset each time a developer updates their app. However, although in-app review request prompts are to be limited to three a year, this limit won't be reset each time a developer subsequently updates their app. This is likely to frustrate developers, but it looks as if Apple has come down on the side of customers who are often subject to apps hassling them too frequently for reviews. Perhaps most significantly for users, Dalrymple revealed that a "master switch" will be included in the next update that turns off user review request prompts across all installed apps. On a final note, Apple told Gruber that existing apps won't have to change their review prompt behavior immediately after the APIs containing the policy changes have been implemented, but Apple offered no timeline for when the

Developers Able to Respond to Customer Reviews in iOS 10.3 and macOS Sierra 10.12.4 [Updated]

Alongside iOS 10.3 and macOS Sierra 10.12.4, Apple is introducing new App Store review features for developers. Going forward, developers will be able to respond to customer reviews on the App Store "in a way that is available for all customers to see." This will allow developers to address negative reviews for the first time ever, something that has long been a point of contention in the iOS and Mac App Stores. Previously, developers have had no way to respond to issues that customers report via an app review, or to further converse with a customer that has been having trouble with an app. Developers are also able to ask customers to provide App Store ratings and reviews while using an app, allowing developers to get immediate feedback without requiring a customer to switch over to the App Store. Apps are currently able to ask for reviews and ratings during usage, but doing so requires the App Store app to be opened up, interrupting an app or gameplay experience. The new App Store ratings and reviews changes will be available to developers when iOS 10.3 and macOS Sierra 10.12.4 are made available to the public. Update: Apple also plans to limit the number of times developers can ask customers to write an App Store review for an app. Only three requests per year will be permitted.

Apple Hikes U.K. App Store Prices By At Least 25 Percent Due to Weak Pound

Apple today announced changes to its App Store pricing policy in India, Turkey, and the U.K., citing fluctuating foreign exchange rates and taxation changes as reasons behind the move. In the United Kingdom, Apple is raising the prices for apps and in-app purchases by at least 25 percent, in light of the weak pound exchange rate, which has been down against the dollar by about 19 percent since the Brexit vote. Apps on sale for $0.99 cents will now cost an equivalent £0.99, rather than £0.79. Apps at price Tier 2 will cost £1.99, up from £1.49, with similar equivalent hikes for higher tiers and in-app purchases. Subscription prices will not be affected. In India, a service tax of 14 percent as well as levies of 0.5 percent were introduced by the government from December 1, 2016. In Romania, the tax rate has decreased from 20 to 19 percent. In Russia, a value added tax (VAT) rate of 18 percent has been introduced. Apple will submit the collected revenue to authorities on developers' behalf. Apple's email notification to developers today covered the iOS and Mac App Store, but price increases are likely to come into effect across iTunes purchases like TV shows and movies. In October, Apple hiked Sterling prices across its Mac lineup for similar reasons. The App Store price increases are set to go live in the next seven days. The announcement comes on the same day U.K. inflation surged to 1.6 percent, an increase put down to rises in air fares and the price of food, as well as prices for motor fuels. Note: Due to the political nature of the discussion

Nintendo Switch Parental Controls App Will Let Parents Remotely Control Switch Console

In the wake of major reveals surrounding the Nintendo Switch and its launch titles, Nintendo has announced a new app coming to smartphone devices that will allow parents to set granular control settings on their family's Switch console (via IGN). The free "Nintendo Switch Parental Controls" app will offer various settings like time limits and remote sleep mode activation, all without a parent having to be near the Switch itself. The basic feature of the app lets adults set customized play times on the Nintendo Switch, and whenever that time limit is reached the system will notify the player in the top left corner of the screen. Whenever the applied time limit is exceeded, parents can use a "last resort" feature and remotely suspend the software being played, ensuring that "further play won't be possible for the rest of the day." Play time limits can be set for each day of the week so parents can allot more time on the weekends, or reward kids on a specific weekday. The app will also send push notifications with details about the console's most-played games "so there's no need to peek over any shoulders," according to Nintendo. Other standard controls include restricting particular ESRB rated games, online communication, and the ability to connect and post to social networks from the Switch. Nintendo says that it hopes the new app can help parents and their kids "enjoy gaming together." During its presentation yesterday, the company also mentioned another app centered around users connecting to their Switch console for online chat, but no details have yet been

Court Rules Apple Can Be Sued for Monopolizing iPhone App Market

A U.S. Appeals Court today ruled that App Store customers can move forward with a lawsuit claiming Apple created an illegal app monopoly because it did not allow users to purchase iPhone apps outside of the App Store, reports Reuters. The decision reverses a 2013 ruling that dismissed the lawsuit, originally filed in 2012. The case, Pepper et al v. Apple Inc., alleges that by not letting users purchase apps from third-party sources, there was no price competition, leading to higher app prices. When the lawsuit was originally filed, Apple requested that it be dismissed because developers, not Apple, set prices for App Store apps. Apple simply provides the platform developers use to sell apps to customers. According to today's ruling, because iPhone users purchase the apps directly from Apple, they have the right to file a lawsuit against the company. An attorney for the plaintiffs in the case told Reuters that the aim of the lawsuit is to allow people to shop for iPhone apps wherever they want, an outcome that's unlikely due to security implications.But if the challenge ultimately succeeds, "the obvious solution is to compel Apple to let people shop for applications wherever they want, which would open the market and help lower prices," Mark C. Rifkin, an attorney with Wolf Haldenstein Adler Freeman & Herz representing the group of iPhone users, told Reuters in an interview. "The other alternative is for Apple to pay people damages for the higher than competitive prices they've had to pay historically because Apple has utilized its monopoly."The Appeals Court

App Store Sets New Records With $240M in Sales on New Year's Day, $20B Paid to Developers in 2016

Apple today announced that January 1, 2017 was the iOS App Store's "busiest day ever" with $240 million total in customer purchases made on the storefront on New Year's Day. Looking back at the past year, App Store developers made $20 billion in 2016, which the company said was up 40 percent from 2015. In the announcement, Apple gave a few statistics on categories like the top grossing apps of the year, which included Monster Strike, Fantasy Westward, Clash Royale, and Pokémon Go. Following a launch in December, Super Mario Run was the number one downloaded app on both Christmas Day and New Year's Day. Throughout December, customers spent $3 billion in total on the App Store, which Apple said was another record-breaking month for the company. “2016 was a record-shattering year for the App Store, generating $20 billion for developers, and 2017 is off to a great start with January 1 as the single biggest day ever on the App Store,” said Philip Schiller, Apple’s senior vice president of Worldwide Marketing. “We want to thank our entire developer community for the many innovative apps they have created — which together with our products — help to truly enrich people’s lives.” In total, the App Store now offers 2.2 million apps, having increased by 20 percent from 2015. Independently developed apps, like Prisma, Reigns, Procreate, Lumino City, Sweat With Kayla and djay Pro, were listed as some of the "most successful apps" of 2016. Globally, Apple said that the App Store helped raise over $17 million in both the fight against AIDS thanks to its annual PRODUCT(RED)

Facebook and Google Dominate 'Top Smartphone Apps of 2016' List, While Apple Music Ranks 9th

A new trend study published by Nielsen this week looks into the top smartphone apps of 2016, as well as the operating systems that the apps were downloaded on. This year within the United States, Facebook won the top spot with more than 146 million average unique users each month. The social network company also dominated the second spot with Facebook Messenger at 129 million unique users per month. Following Facebook's winning of the top spots, Google holds most of the remaining spots with YouTube (113 million), Google Maps (105 million), Google Search (103 million), Google Play (99 million), and Gmail (88 million). Another Facebook-owned app in the 8th spot, Instagram (74 million), bookends the Google apps. For Apple, the only app that appears on Nielsen's chart is Apple Music, with just over 68 million unique users each month, a growth of 20 percent from 2015. Earlier in December, it was reported that Apple's music streaming service had officially surpassed the 20 million subscriber mark. Amazon's popular shopping app rounds out the list in the 10th spot with 65 million monthly users. In the third quarter of 2016, the apps were opened on average 53 percent of the time on an Android operating system and 45 percent on iOS, according to Nielsen's data of around 9,000 panelists. Windows Phone and BlackBerry accounted for a minimal portion of the statistics at 2 percent and 1 percent,

Best iPhone and iPad Apps on Sale Through the Holidays

Today marks the first day of Apple's annual iTunes Connect holiday shutdown, meaning the App Store will be void of any new or updated apps between now and Tuesday, December 27. In the meantime, iPhone and iPad users have plenty of time to capitalize on holiday sales for a number of popular apps. Alto's Adventure $3.99 → 99 cents iPhone and iPad AppShopper | App Store Editor's Note: A beautiful endless runner with procedurally generated terrain based on real-world snowboarding. Day One $4.99 → $2.99 iPhone and iPad AppShopper | App Store Editor's Note: A popular journaling app for capturing everything from once-in-a-lifetime events to everyday moments. Tweetbot $9.99 → $4.99 iPhone and iPad AppShopper | App Store Editor's Note: A popular Twitter app with granular mute filters, support for multiple accounts, timeline syncing across iPhone, iPad, and Mac, and more. djay Pro for iPad $19.99 → $9.99 iPad AppShopper | App Store Editor's Note: A popular app for DJs that integrates with your media library and Spotify. 2016 Apple Design Award Winner. Byword $5.99 → $2.99 iPhone and iPad AppShopper | App Store Editor's Note: A popular app for writing with text-to-HTML tool Markdown. Duet Display $19.99 → $9.99 iPhone and iPad AppShopper | App Store Editor's Note: Turn a plugged-in iPad or iPhone into an extra display for your Mac or PC. Praised for lag-free experience in reviews. Don't Starve: Pocket Edition $4.99 → 99 cents iPhone and iPad AppShopper | App Store Editor's Note: MacRumors sister website To

Apple's 'Notify' Feature for the Release of Super Mario Run Was Far Too Late for Users

Shortly after Apple first revealed that Nintendo was bringing Super Mario Run to the iPhone and iPad, many users discovered that Cupertino was also using the game's highly anticipated release as a test run for a new "Notify" system in the App Store. Upon searching for the title on their devices before it was available, users were given the option of tapping an orange "Notify" button where the Get button or price usually appears. Undoubtedly many users tapped or clicked the button thinking they would be first to play Nintendo's debut title on iOS. But the delay between the game's appearance in the App Store and the actual delivery of notification prompts has left many users skeptical of the feature. Scumbag Super Mario: Asks you a million times to be notified for the app release.Doesn't notify you when app releases.#SuperMarioRun— Jared Mecham (@jaredmecham) December 15, 2016 For many, the notification came the day after the game had been officially released. Large numbers of people received it long after they had downloaded and purchased the full game. Others are apparently yet to receive the prompt they signed up to receive. It's possible that the sheer volume of users visiting the App Store in excitement for Super Mario Run caused a system-wide lag that prevented the notifications from being pushed to end-users' devices. If so, some may wonder why Apple chose to test the Notify service on such a hugely anticipated title in the first place. Conversely, Apple may have intentionally staggered the notifications to ease the load on its systems as gamers

Service Outages Affecting App Store, Apple TV, Apple Music and Mac App Store

According to Apple's System Status website, the App Store, the Apple TV, Apple Music, and the Mac App Store are currently experiencing service issues. Many Apple customers have also been complaining of App Store issues on Twitter, Reddit, and other social networks. Affected customers are unable to download apps and in some cases, can't load the App Store at all. Service interruptions have been ongoing since approximately 4:00 p.m. Pacific Time and there's no word on when service will be fully restored. The issues could potentially be related to the release of Super Mario Run and the strain that it is causing on the App Store due to its