Chapter 9. Distribution Methods

An app is not worth much if all it does is run on your simulator, or perhaps on your own USB-connected device. The point of apps is having other people use them, and ideally having other people pay for them. Although we’re not going to go into detail on these different methods, it’s good to touch on them so that you can have some idea of the pros and cons of distributing your apps in the different ways available.

Apple’s App Store

Although this wasn’t the first online “place” to allow you to purchase (I purchased some BREW-based apps on an old cell phone I had via the service provider) it is by all means the most popular, most profitable, and most talked about. When iOS 2.0 came out with a cute little “App Store” icon, I dare say no one, even at Apple, had a feeling for the impact this little thing would have on the world. Although the built-in apps are nice and functional, they aren’t why you love your mobile device. It’s the games and other apps that are developed by developers and software companies that make you check to make sure you have it before you leave the house.

Getting your app in the App Store grants you access to millions of customers just a single tap away from buying your app, and in the process giving you some money. It’s a pretty great deal for independent developers especially who can build an app, upload it, and let the world buy it, or buy it and give a review. The flip side of this is that Apple decides what can and can’t be in ...

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