Thursday, April 23, 2009

One Billion Apps

A billion apps downloaded. In just nine months.

What does that tell us?

It tells me a lot. It tells me that people have a very different relationship with applications on the iPhone than they do anywhere else.

That really made me stop when I thought that.

Because that’s a big deal, that’s the game changer right there.

For decades now, installation, even choice of apps, has been the domain of the lone specialist. Groups, whether they be families or companies, trusted nerds to specify, source, install, train, maintain, upgrade, replace them when needed.

That’s all gone. Everyone does it now, all that's gone on the iPhone.

I’ve been long fond of saying that Everyone’s A Nerd Now. That we all use computers and software to do whatever it is we do, but the reality is that most people used a trusted guide to structure that experience still. But here it’s clear that is over.

Why is this big for me? It’s big because it opens up the possibility of exploring that relationship. That people, individuals, will start to engage with software on the same level as they do with books, or songs, or film, other creative material. That it’s personal in a real way which it’s never actually been before, not shared, not mediated, not agreed or consulted about. But direct, immediate, intimate in a way.

Is this what Apple’s finally done after all these years? Ignited the personal in personal computing?


  1. sooo funny! when i first heard about the kid that won, for a millisecond i thought HE had downloaded one billion apps himself.

    of course that's silly.

  2. [...] blogged here before about the shift with the App Store. A fundamental change between how ordinary people and applications interact. People feel about apps [...]


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