iPhone applications

Apple says iPhone and iPod Touch owners have downloaded 3 billion applications in the 18 months since Apple launched the App Store. In a release touting the milestone, CEO Steve Jobs says “this is like nothing we’ve ever seen before.”


Apple doesn’t offer a breakdown of paid vs free apps, or any category breakdowns.

— Forrester analyst Charles Golvin, meanwhile, says that smartphone penetration in the U.S. reached 17% in 2009, up from 11%. That’s on par with the 2008 pace, he says.

That’s impressive, he writes, “since technologies that are in their initial phase of adoption ….usually exhibit gaudy growth rates that decline precipitously as the base expands.”

There’s no standard definition of smartphone. Forrester defines them as a mobile phone or connected handheld device that uses a high-level operating system, including iPhone OS, BlackBerry OS, Windows Mobile, PalmOS, WebOS, Symbian, and any flavor of Linux including Android.

BlackBerrys, made by Canadian wireless firm Research In Motion, still dominate the category, Golvin says.

“Yes, despite Apple getting all the attention, even in a market segment that grew by more than half, RIM maintained its two-to-one advantage over the iPhone. Certainly broad availability across all operators and a range of form factors and prices helps, but also some people just want a keyboard, full stop,” he says.

Via USA Today