Happy 5th birthday to the Apple App Store!

Happy 5th birthday App Store! What an incredible five years it has been. The App Store has completely changed the software industry, and paved the way for developers to be able to publish apps and content directly to end users. There's an app for just about everything these days, and most of these are readily accessible to anyone, spare some specialty apps with hefty price tags. But it wasn't always this way. From its humble beginnings in 2008, the App Store has grown from 500 apps to more than 900,000 at your fingertips today.

The App Store has the world’s largest collection of mobile apps. With over 50,000,000,000 downloads, it is safe to say that just about everyone is downloading apps. In fact, that breaks down to about 800 apps downloaded per second. As of June 10, more than $10 Billion has been paid to developers through the App Store - talk about boosting the economy! The App Store has paid more money to developers than the combined GDP of both Haiti and Fiji. Not only is the App Store's growth incredibly successful by itself, but when you take into consideration that Google Play, Amazon Appstore, Windows Phone Store, and the Blackberry World store all followed suit behind the App Store, Apple's reach and contributions with the App Store is that much more impressive.

Because of the App Store, we do things differently now. For example, if you hear a song playing and you are curious what band it is, just use Shazam to find out. How cool is that? Or, if you are waiting at a bus stop, why not play Angry Birds? Ok, maybe that's played its course, but you get the picture. An app that has made a big difference in my day to day is the Starbucks App. With the swipe of my trusted iPhone sidekick, not only is my coffee paid for, but the juggling game of finding my wallet in the black hole that is my purse is eliminated. There is so much to be said for convenience.

While the three apps I mentioned are certainly not necessities, there are plenty of apps out there that are making a difference. Apps utilizing The Church App platform have gotten over 6,000,000 downloads (across 3 app stores). That's 6 million downloads helping to share Jesus' name. Very recently, our friends at You Version announced that their Bible App has been downloaded 100 million times. Isn't that incredible?

Apple is doing a bit of celebrating in honor of the App Store birthday too, and giving away several apps that are usually paid. "It's been a remarkably prolific five years for the App Store. To celebrate, we're giving everyone five landmark games and five groundbreaking apps for a limited time." Not only that, but they've got a nice little timeline that breaks down "the key moments that have made the App Store the world's most innovative destination for apps."

Has the app store changed your day to day life?