There was a time, not that long ago, when a mobile phone was a mobile phone — and nothing more. You could make and receive phone calls and text messages, and on the more advanced phones you could even send pictures!
A lot has changed. Back then the concept of an “app” wasn’t even around. If your phone didn’t do something that you wanted it to, you went out and bought a new phone. Today, if you want new functionality, you install an app.
In the desktop computer market the number of “programs” (that’s what us “techno geezers” called “apps” back in the day) that were available for your OS dictated which OS you were going to run: Windows, Mac, OS/2, or some other OS.
Have mobile phones have crossed over into the desktop computer arena?
If so, we have to assume that the platform with the most useful apps is going to “win” the race. Now, before you go all “Apple has 250K apps, so they win”, remember that Microsoft “won” the desktop race, but Mac is still around. Winning doesn’t mean that everyone else simply goes away. It’s the same with the mobile world.
It took Apple right around 500 days to hit their 100,000 app mark (November 2009, 16 months after their July 11, 2008 launch).
The Android Market, which officially opened for business October 22, 2008 (the day the G1 launched), took just a bit more than 700 days to achieve the same 100K app milestone.
While Google hasn’t announced this milestone formally, their @AndroidDev Twitter feed wasn’t shy in shouting the accomplishment from the proverbial rooftops.