Happy Sixth Birthday to The iOS App Store!

Happy Sixth Birthday to The iOS App Store!

It was six years ago today that Apple debuted their new App Store. The new store, enabled via iPhone OS 2, and an update to iTunes, opened up the world of third-party apps to users of Apple’s iPhone.

App Store Apps Wall

Its hard to imagine a world without apps, but once upon a time, Apple didn’t allow third-party apps on its iPhone. The device originally only officially supported Apple’s built-in apps, and web apps via the device’s Safari browser.

When Apple announced its App Store, (see video below), it set the smartphone world on its ear. Other device makers scrambled to open their own app stores to compete.

Since the debut of the App Store six years ago, it has grown to include over 1.2 million apps, and is growing every day.

App Store customers has downloaded apps from the store more than 75 billion times since July 10, 2008.

Apple says there are over 9 million registered developers on the iOS platform, up 47% from just last year. Those developers have earned a total of over $15 billion since the 2008 debut of the App Store.

Over $10 billion was spent in the App Store in 2013 alone. $1 billion in just December!

Apple opened a Mac App Store in January 2011, which gives users access to a collection of Mac software via its own app. The app also offers both app and operating system updates, and uses iCloud support to enable automatic downloads of Mac app purchases across all of a user’s Apple computers.

With the fall debut of iOS 8, Apple will begin offering “Family Sharing,” which will allow families to share purchases among members, and will also enable parental approval before allowing app purchases to complete.

Happy Birthday iOS App Store! You’ve come a long way in a very short time. You’ve achieved a lot for a six-year-old!