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Apple’s App Store is two today

It’s easy to mock Apple – and I do – but the App Store’s had an enormous effect on software. So when I say app-y birthday, I mean it.

Being able to pick up apps for a few quid here, a few pence there encourages us to experiment, to forget our favourites when something brighter and better comes along – and that in turn means developers are constantly under pressure to raise their game, to create even better applications. Software hasn’t been this exciting since the online shareware explosion of the nineties.

9 replies on “Apple’s App Store is two today”

App store really is a leap forward. I’ve bought a lot of apps for my iPad, but only use about half of them. The ones I do use are great, and a real bargain too.

Makes me laugh when people bitch about specs. It’s all about what it can do (apps) and how it changes the way you do things, usually for the better.

Specs matter though – see my rant about upgrading the 3G to iOS 4, which turned it from a decent platform to an unusable brick. You need to have enough horsepower to run the apps in the first place :)

Steve Ballmer was right when he danced around and shouted “developers! developers! developers!” to underline their importance: they build the apps, the apps make the platform. iPad would be a very different and much dumber machine without apps.

Specs matter when you are optimistically attempting to shoehorn a major os upgrade into some marginal hardware (Apple’s fault for trying to please too many people?) but when it comes to deciding whether or not to buy an iPad, the prospective buyer is comparing specs with which alternatives exactly??

On the other hand, if there is an essential feature missing, without which it will be totally useless, I guess the specs (or lack of) win.

I had some reservations about the iPad like many other people, but after taking the plunge, my personal experience has been that any missing features have simply paled into insignificance. And yes, the apps have a lot to do with that.

Pleasing too many people? Maybe, or maybe they just didn’t bother their arse testing it :)

I do think specs are relevant even when there aren’t credible rivals, though: if you know you want to do X, will you need to buy a pricier version? Is the device cheap enough for you to work around a missing feature, or would you be breaking the bank to get something that’s only going to piss you off? And of course those calculations will be different for every single person.

Btw which model did you go for? I went for the cheapest, the 16gb no-3G.

I went for a 32GB no-3G. I couldn’t justify 3G because I already have a 3G USB dongle and a mi-fi type hotspot/router to plug it in to. I don’t often use the iPad where there isn’t wifi and when you’ve got a smartphone, there’s just too much crossover. 3G would be nice tho.

As for storage capacity, I think that if you don’t plan on stuffing it full of music and videos, 16GB is just about adequate.

Price difference for 3G is just daft when mifi, phones that become hotspots exist.

Budget meant 16gb was my only option, but I’ve already found more uses for it than I anticipated – so for example it makes a great music player, but my library is 40-odd gigs. I’ll buy an iPad 3 to address that in two years :)

If I could use my iPhone sim and data plan – and let’s face it, there’s no technological reason why I can’t – then I’d consider 3G. Otherwise it’s too pricey.

It’s a shame mifi minutes expire after a month. If they didn’t I’d buy one just so I had it when I needed it.

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