There’s an app for that

Angry Birds. (Image: www.rovio.com)

Apps are the craze that won’t go out of fashion. Smartphones are becoming increasingly common in the mobile market, and one of their big selling points are the apps they offer. These apps can be entertaining time-killers (catapulting birds at wooden structures to reclaim eggs from evil pigs is more addictive than it sounds), but they’re useful too, and span genres such as business, productivity, news, music and many more.

The number of people using apps is ever-growing, to the point where ideas that were initially meant for simple apps, have become unimaginably popular, and are now spreading into other forms of media – the Angry Birds film being a key example.

(Image: www.brightsideofnews.com)




Could apps be seen as potential new ways of marketing feature-length films? Of course, it’s unlikely that Rovio (developers of Angry Birds) had planned an Angry Birds movie when they launched the app in 2009, but its massive success and resulting ventures (short films, feature films, and merchandise including toys, board games, (almost too realistic) cakes, and even flip flops) could prompt other developers to consider apps as a way to increase awareness. A good app has the potential to reach a huge audience in a matter of hours. Angry Birds usually dominates the app charts all over the world, and has surpassed 250 million downloads – a figure that’s approaching the total population of the USA! Rovio have now set their sights on 1 billion downloads.

Apps like Angry Birds have contributed in no small part to the 15 billion apps downloaded from Apple’s App Store . Now Android’s Market and Blackberry’s App World are beefing up their app collections to try and match that of Apple.

Remember when people starting playing a simple but clever little game called Fruit Ninja? (If you’re sitting there clueless, go check out the strangely satisfying slicing game – probably Angry Birds’ biggest rival). Fruit Ninja’s success has led to the creation of a Fruit Ninja game – see video below, but skip the first 50 seconds – for Kinect (Xbox’s motion-control system), as well as a Facebook version of the classic game.


Trailer for Fruit Ninja for Kinect (via Youtube.com)

The popular game Cut the Rope started life as an app, and is now (strangely) being made into a comic. Facebook have realised that not everyone uses a smartphone, and have recently developed an app for ‘dumbphones’. Additionally, the current series of the UK Apprentice featured an episode centred on app-building (hit the jump for some app-rentice humour… sorry couldn’t resist.) All in all, it seems apps are taking over, and that a clever app won’t necessarily be restricted to the app domain. Today we’re asking you what your favourite app of all time is. Answers in the comments box!
(Mine’s got to be Tap Studio – it’s similar to Tap Tap Revenge but you can create your own ‘taps’… very addictive!)

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