E-books now largest category in App Store

Australian Macworld staff
11 March, 2010
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E-books are now more plentiful on the App Store than any other kind of app – including games – reports mobile advertising company Mobclix.

The company identified 27,000 e-book apps, as opposed to 25,400 games. (Surprisingly, “novelty fart apps” didn’t even rank in the top five.)

After Books and Games, the order of the next six categories is: Entertainment, Education, Utilities, Travel, Lifestyle and Sports. Last on the list is Weather with 552 apps.

Paid apps outnumber free ones by 106,789 to 38,241, Mobclix says.

The e-book number does get a bit artificially inflated, however. For one thing, standalone e-book apps are a bit simpler to create than games. Additionally, we don’t buy a new, custom movie-player for each film we want to watch.

The current trend to make custom apps on a book-by-book basis is tiresome: for example, some book apps let you adjust font size, or colours, or lock the screen’s orientation, but there’s little consistency.

While apps like Kindle for iPhone and Stanza haven’t curbed the onslaught of standalone e-book apps, perhaps Apple’s forthcoming iBookstore for the iPad will finally do the trick. Whether the iPad will truly compete as an e-book reader, however, remains to be seen.

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