The Know It Guy

Apple’s assignment: We’re stuck in an app rut

Let’s step lower back in time for a moment and consider going lower back to the use of foldable maps or Web printouts for instructions, hailing cabs (or even taking a bus!), and no social gear to share those each day self-photographs.Globe Inform

Apple kicked off its big Worldwide Developers Conference in San Jose this week with a funny video displaying what that app-less world might be like. The company also debuted its new online TV display, Planet of the Apps, a Shark Tank meets The Voice opposition positioned to showcase the rock big name of these days, at least in Apple’s thoughts: the app maker.

Apple has a factor about apps. A handful simply has been life changing, and you could be counted them on one hand: transportation apps inclusive of Uber and Lyft, navigation favorites Google Maps and Waze, cellular-best social networks Snapchat and Instagram, and courting gear including Tinder.

But that planet Apple speaks of is an app universe with, allow’s face it, primarily veterans. We have not visible a brand new wreck app released and stay atop the charts for months in years.

Apps began in 2008, while Apple added the App Store, and not one of the apps featured in Apple’s promo film is latest ones. In reality, with all of the talk approximately apps this week, a brief glance at the App Store charts indicates the equal antique-timers atop the listing — YouTube, Instagram, Snapchat, Facebook Messenger, Bitmoji, Facebook and Google Maps. Bitmoji and Messenger are the most current, and that they debuted in 2015.

Only a handful of latest apps have cracked the top 30 chart and stayed there — a trend we noted in March — with Wish, Lego, and Musical.Ly, apps to buy reasonably-priced stuff from China, sell stuff to others in a safer environment than Craigslist and lip-synch to songs, respectively. Pokémon Go turned into a summer season smash in 2016. It’s now not currently listed on the iTunes Top two hundred, however, does rank at No. 47 in the Games class.

With all of the Apple hype this week, we questioned whether or not folks are still simply downloading apps. Or is that something they did years ago once they were given their new smartphones?

When we talked to customers in San Francisco this week, we have been surprised. Most told us they did certainly download them daily, weekly and monthly, and very few told us they rarely download apps.

But the apps they download are the identical old ones: Uber, Lyft, Facebook Messenger, Waze, Twitter, Shazam, Fun Run 2 and Candy Crush.

Market studies firm AppAnnie tells us that certainly, some 30 million apps are downloaded each day international. Yes, there still are hundreds of thousands of human beings either including Facebook and Instagram to their telephones for the primary time or possibly re-downloading to feature to their new phones.

Clearly, Apple has its paintings cut out for it to get new apps into the arms of customers. The organization announced a brand new appearance to its App Store, coming in September, to attempt to carry higher attention to debuting apps. We’ll discover in a few months if the update can trade the make-up inside the charts.

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In other tech news of the week:

—Pandora can breathe again. The struggling online radio station, which has lots of listeners however sky-high royalty commitments, was given a $480 million lifeline from satellite broadcaster SiriusXM. Do the 2 merge subsequent?

—Amazon killed the high-quality deal on the town for online backup. The $fifty-nine.Ninety-nine limitless garages for Amazon’s Cloud Drive is now restrained at 1 terabyte of the garage. We now dub Backblaze nice-deal popularity, at $50 yearly. In different on-line storage information, Apple sweetened its pricing for iCloud backup, supplying 2 TB of facts for $one hundred twenty yearly. It had previously supplied 1 TB for the identical rate. In the virtual age, with our ever-increasing array of pics and videos of multiple gadgets, the want for on-line storage is extra critical than ever.

—More problems for journey-hailing company Uber, which has suffered through a lousy company 2017 amidst reviews of sexual harassment and other ills. This week we discovered the employer fired a government who ran its Asia Pacific operations, however simplest after a news outlet discovered out he had acquired and shared with different executives the scientific records of a woman who turned into raped by using an Uber motive force in India.

—Hacking replaces: Pop megastar Britney Spears’ Instagram account was utilized by Russian hackers as a secret bulletin board to region coded messages that were part of a malware scheme, a safety employer said.

—Finally, ICYMI, Apple introduced lots on the WWDC. The highlights: the HomePod, a brand new $350 top rate Wi-Fi tune speaker controlled via Siri, Apple’s non-public assistant, will pass on sale in December; Apple’s iOS mobile working gadget gets a replace in September with new features, which includes the potential to pay pals thru textual content messages, and new augmented reality software program for developers to carry to new apps. Additionally, new powerful iPads and iMacs have been unveiled.

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