App Store downloads hit two billion

Apple has been stunned by the runaway popularity of its App Store, a software marketplace for iPod Touch and iPhones.
Apple has been stunned by the runaway popularity of its App Store, a software marketplace for iPod Touch and iPhones.

WASHINGTON - Apple announced that more than two billion applications for the iPhone and iPod Touch have been downloaded from its App Store, just five months after hitting the one-billion download mark.

The Cupertino, California-based company also said that its App Store, the world's largest, now boasts more than 85,000 free and paid software programs in 20 categories.

Apple announced on April 24 that it had passed the one-billion download mark and chief executive Steve Jobs said the pace was accelerating.

"The rate of App Store downloads continues to accelerate with users downloading a staggering two billion apps in just over a year, including more than half a billion apps this quarter alone," Jobs said in a statement.

Apple said more than 50 million iPhone and iPod Touch devices have been sold in 77 countries.

The success of Apple's App Store, opened in July 2008, has prompted rivals Research in Motion, maker of the Blackberry, Google and others to open their own online application stores.

The applications for the iPhone have been created by independent developers, but Apple has strict control over which ones are featured in the App Store.

- AFP

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