Apple designs and creates iPod and iTunes, Mac laptop and desktop computers, the OS X operating system, and the revolutionary iPhone and iPad.
Apple Splashes $50 Million on the App Store: Is it Worth Your Time Now?
The ubiquitous applications that permeate our lives today and the App stores that sell them is something of an Apple invention though some people will vehemently disagree. Whatever the position though, it is largely accepted that the Apple App Store is premier place to get some of the best Apps available in the mobile space.
Such pre-eminence hasn’t always translated to a good user experience though and for years many of Apple’s most loyal users have complained that the App Store is a nightmare for ‘app discovery’. The result has been a heeding of sorts by Apple and the company acquired a piece 7 months ago that was aimed at making the App Store more user-friendly.
Enter Chomp – the mobile app discovery engine
Apple bought Chomp with one aim in mind it seems and that was to integrate the discovery engine into the main working parts of Apple iOS 6 App Store. Call it a Borg-assimilation if you will.
Chomp has received the full integration treatment and even the website that once acted as the shop front for Chomp has been disbanded. The first thing users will notice is that the general look and feel of the App Store has changed—for the better. Bear in mind that most of Apple’s design for its products have always been aesthetically pleasing; now this one in particular is even better.
Apps are easier to find
Apple perhaps saw the need for an overhaul of its search process because even independent research showed that things were abysmal. According to one source, more than 75% of the apps in the store have never been downloaded. All that is set to change now because the updated UI and search features, makes finding apps a cinch. Users have reported better search from the ‘featured’ tab on iPads where the huge database of apps has now been better categorized.
There have also been more robust changes at the algorithmic level and now developer-defined keywords have been put on par with keywords that the apps are listed under. Developers who have been doing the equivalent of keyword stuffing with the names of in-app purchase have had their day because Apple has given less importance to this part of the algorithm.
All told the cost of the acquisition and other elements of the overhaul has cost Apple $50 million—a drop in the bucket for sure, but a much needed spend. With millions of people flocking to buy the new iPhone 5 and the iPad mini set to launch on October 23, having smooth and functional app store is a sound move.
Lesson learned from ‘Maps’
Apple’s stock hasn’t suffered much from the fallout over its Maps blunder and the company is obviously keen to avoid making such monumental mistakes with an important asset like the App Store. The new design has yet to reverberate across the Apple universe but when it does, I am sure users will be overwhelmingly pleased.
Are you an Apple user, and what do you think of the new App Store? Share your thoughts below.
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