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Monday August 11, 2008 12:06 pm

Steve Jobs to WSJ: App Store rakes in $30 million in first month

App Store downloads

Well, if you were curious just how successful the has been since its launch, Steve Jobs spilled the beans in an interview published in the Wall Street Journal this morning. First and foremost, the most amazing part is that sales in the App Store hit about $30 million. Now, if you think about that figure and realize that only keeps 30% of it (well, 30% of sales of apps that aren’t their own), that is $9 million for Apple, and $21 million for developers.

Of course, a large percentage of apps downloaded are free. You just know those have to be popular, right? Well, we didn’t get an official breakdown of free app downloads versus paid, but Jobs did say that there have been over 60 million downloads from the App Store. That’s an average of 2 million downloads per day, every day. If you had any doubt that the App Store would be a hit, well, there’s your proof.

Other tidbits from the interview include confirmation that Apple did bake in a kill switch into the software, which would allow them to remotely disable an application, in the event that they accidentally approve a malicious app that people start downloading. According to Jobs, “hopefully we never have to pull that lever, but we would be irresponsible not to have a lever like that to pull.” Okay, that’s fair.

Lastly, you know that I Am Rich app that was selling for $999.99? Well, Steve says pulling it from the App Store was a judgment call by Apple. In our opinion, though, that doesn’t make it right. Who is Apple to say that an app should be pulled just because people were complaining that they accidentally purchased it? The fact is that the app worked, didn’t crash phones, and didn’t compromise security. This may be the start of a slippery slope. After all, what else might Apple pull or deny entry into the App Store just because they don’t like it, or because they think it is too expensive? Isn’t that up to the developer to decide?

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