Apple's iTunes App Store has hit yet another milestone: two billion apps downloaded since the Store hung out its digital shingle on July 11, 2008.
The news came in an Apple announcement which also noted that the store's customers now include over 50 million iPhone and iPod touch owners worldwide - in 77 countries, to be exact.
Those worthies can now choose from among more than 85,000 apps created by 125,000 registered members of Apple’s iPhone Developer Program.
Say what you will about Apple's strong-arm control of what gets inserted into its sleek and shiny handhelds, but it's clear that the public has bought into the Apple ecosystem in a big way.
And the App Store juggernaut shows no signs of slowing. Quite the opposite - it's pedal-to-the-metal accelerating. The Store reached one billion downloads in April of this year, nine months after it launched. Shortly after its first birthday it had distributed 1.5 billion, and now - five months after its one-billion milestone, it has hit two billion.
Apple, however, doesn't reveal how many of the downloads are of paid apps and how many are free. The app trackers at Mobclix, however, do provide a breakdown - and their latest count claims over 65,000 paid and a hair under 20,000 free.
Mobclix also provides a breakdown by category, with games and entertainment apps leading the way at 16,603 and 12,656, respectively, as of September 23.
That's a lot of fart apps. In fact, a search on "fart" in the Store turns up 406 downloadable impersonations of the fine art of clearing one's nether throat.
If one were to assume that fart apps are downloaded at the same rate as other apps - an insupportable assumption, of course, but allow us the fantasy of such an extrapolation - those 406 apps would account for over 9.5 million instances of iPhone and iPod touch poots, toots, and related digital windbreaking.
Luckily, among the 85,000 apps in the Store are enough truly useful apps to balance the juvenile lunacy - think Pandora Radio, Shazam, Remote, Quickoffice, Kindle, LogMeIn Ignition (App Store links), and many, many more.
The iTunes App Store is a success. The doubters were wrong. Steve Jobs was right. ®