Tuesday, June 02, 2009

Iphone Application Store

When you select the iTunes Store, you're taken to the App Store main menu, which somewhat resembles the mobile iTunes store in design. You search applications by name and category and you can browse through the lists of Featured applications or the Top 25. There also is a feature for seeing if your purchased applications have any updates.

We purchased a few apps for the iPhone. Downloads over Wi-Fi were pretty quick; most apps took just a few seconds, but keep in mind it will vary by the size of the app. Though you can purchase iTunes songs wirelessly only through a Wi-Fi connection, you can download applications of 10Mb or less over a 3G network and even over EDGE (if 3G isn't available).

Downloads over 3G took about the same time as they did over Wi-Fi, give or take a few seconds, but apps over EDGE are quite pokey. We also purchased applications through the online iTunes (7.7) store. We downloaded Super Monkey Ball and then synced it to our phone--a new applications tab appears under the iPhone menu. The process was quick and painless. What's more, navigation through the online apps store is easy. After loading apps, the icons will appear on the Home screen.

What's most remarkable about the online applications store is the sheer breadth of titles available, many of which take full advantage of the accelerometer. As of this writing, there are 27 pages available in a extensive range of categories. If there is one thing about the iPhone that's to love, it's the App Store--even if not all the applications are keepers and Apple is maintaining strict control over who gets in. Sure, Apple is not the first company to build a phone that takes third-party applications, but like the iPhone itself, the App Store is unique not for what it does, but for how it does it. The process is so easy that we can't imagine having the same experience on a Windows Mobile device. Of course, before you get carried away, remember that some apps are free but others will cost you.

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