Apple App Store
International Game Developers Association
|Apple App Store|
|Platform||Apple iPhones, iPod Touches, iPad|
|Development Languages||Objective-C, Objective-C++|
|Development Environments||iPhone SDK|
|Average price||$1 - $3 (USD)|
|Platform size (people)||45 million users, 133,979 third-party applications|
|Financial model||Application sales|
|edit this info|
This is the primary method for distributing iPhone applications, and the only method for a developer to reach unmodified iPhonesâ„¢ and iPodÂ® touches. Once accepted into the App StoreSM, the app will be available for purchase and download through iTunesÂ® to any iPhoneâ„¢ owner.
Opened in July of 2008, the Apple App Store is the service for iPhone, iPod Touch, and iPad which allows users to browse and download applications from the iTunes Store. Applications can be downloaded directly to the device in which they are browsing from. "App Store" is a registered trademark of Apple Inc.
Marketing and PR
Games developed for the iPhone are distributed through the App Store. The iPhone uses a proprietary operating system called iOS. Developers must register with Apple to access the iOS SDK and other development tools. Applications are written in Objective-C; they are reviewed and must be approved by Apple before they are available in the App Store.
Apple rates applications based on their content, and determines what age group that application is appropriate for. Apple applies one of 4 possible ratings to applications:
- 4+ - Contains no objectionable material
- 9+ - May contain mild or infrequent occurrences of cartoon, fantasy or realistic violence, and infrequent or mild mature, suggestive, or horror-themed content which may not be suitable for children under the age of 9.
- 12+ - May also contain infrequent mild language, frequent or intense cartoon, fantasy or realistic violence, and mild or infrequent mature or suggestive themes, and simulated gambling which may not be suitable for children under the age of 12.
- 17+ - May also contain frequent and intense mature, horror, and suggestive themes; plus sexual content, nudity, alcohol, tobacco, and drugs which may not be suitable for children under the age of 17. Consumers must be at least 17 years old to purchase apps with this rating. Whenever an app of this rating is requested for download, a message will appear, verifying if a user is 17 or older, and asking to confirm the purchase for this reason. Apple rates all applications with a web browser 17+, due to content accessible on the internet. For this reason, certain applications with little or no objectionable content, such as Facebook, have a 17+ rating.
Tools and development
When apps are submitted for distribution to the app store, the App Store staff reviews the app before approving the submission. They look at things like performance use and memory leaks to make sure the app is stable. They also make sure the app does not access the device's private framework. Apple also encourages documentation with the app submission. If there is no documentation, then the app is usually rejected. The staff also looks for a follow-up plan for submitting bug fixes and / or updates to the app to enhance the user's experience.
iPhone SDK only runs on Apple OS's
Access to the iPhoneâ„¢ SDK, along with XcodeÂ® and an iPhoneâ„¢ emulator, is free once you make an account with the AppleÂ® Developer Connection (also free). However, in order to run programs on any device other than your test unit, you must buy into the Standard ($99 per year) or Enterprise ($299 per year) Developer Programs. Standard includes distribution on the App StoreSM, plus ad-hoc distribution on to up to 100 devices. Ad-hoc distribution is intended for beta testing; an app must be signed specifically for the target unit before it will install. Enterprise is specifically for organizations of 500+ members to distribute in-house applications. It doesn't include distribution on the App Store.
Apps on the iPad
The recently announced iPad will have the capability to download apps from the App Store. There are no apps native to the iPad just yet but Apple promises to have apps ready at its release. When apps are downloaded to the iPad, the resolution is doubled to fit the larger screen of the iPad. The iPad runs in a 4:3 aspect resolution vs. the iPhone and iPod Touch's 16:7 resolution. The iPad will be running the iPhone 3.2 OS which is said to have better gesture recognition.
Developers receive %70 of each sale. There is no minimum price.
Terms of Agreement
Behind a registration wall.
- iPhone development page
- Developer program signup page
- How to set up ad-hoc distribution