July 11, 2008, 11:14 AM — Apple Computer's App Store is available as of today. CRN has a good slide show preview of the site for us non iPhone users who are interested, but not interested enough to actually visit the real site. Apple boss Jobs touts the quality and sophistication of iPhone applications available.
At launch time, there were 552 applications, including 135 free ones. Prediction-making analysts have already gotten out their crystal balls, and have said that iPhone apps will be a billion dollar market by next year. Although the number one app so far is something called "Super Monkey Ball", said analysts are predicting that the app store will be a treasure trove of business applications for all those iPhone-carrying road warriors. That's assuming of course, that the iPhone becomes the favorite smartphone of the corporate crowd. It's enevitable that there will be a crossover mobile device that will be used both for corporate and personal use, but will the iPhone and its apps have enough appeal to break out of its consumer hype and compete in the corporate world with more mature offerings like the venerable BlackBerry? The corporate customer base is out of Apple's traditional realm, but then again, desk jockeys like to play Super Monkey Ball too.