business news in context, analysis with attitude

by Kevin Coupe

PHOENIX - Ten billion applications.

That’s how many “apps” have been downloaded from the Apple App Store in just two-and-a-half years.

That’s right. This is a business that did not even exist 36 months ago, and now 10 billion apps have been downloaded.

(BTW...the Associated Press reports that “Apple said it would give the 10 billionth person to download an app a $10,000 gift card to its iTunes store ... The prize went to Gail Davis of Orpington, Kent, in the U.K. She downloaded a free game app called Paper Glider.)

Compare this success to video and music downloads from the iTunes Store, and enormous success that nonetheless took eight years to reach the 10 billion mark.

This suggests, of course, that people and companies need to paying very close attention to the continuing evolution of this method of communicating with customers.

But it also suggests that what people and companies need to do is keep their eyes open for the next App Store. It may already be out there ... it will challenge conventional wisdom ... it will disrupt existing business models ... it will be relevant to certain consumer needs and wants that for some reason are not being served ... and it may even compete with the App Store.

One other note.

I am here in Phoenix for the FMI Midwinter Executive Conference, where I hope there will be moments of eye-opening clarity. On Tuesday, I’ll do my best to contribute such a moment - I’ll be moderating a panel of senior executives from outside the food industry - from the newspaper business, advertising, entertainment and sports - as they discuss the ways in which their businesses are being transformed by events, and the hard decisions they are making to keep their companies relevant in a fast-evolving competitive climate.

If you are attending the conference, I hope you’ll come by and say hello. If you’re not, I’ll try to give you a unique sense of what we learn here and what the opportunities are through the always irreverent MNB prism.

Eyes wide open, folks. It’s the only way to do business.
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