In Five Short Years, Apple's App Store Changed Everything

Dan Rowinski | ReadWrite | July 10, 2013

The app model for distributing software has transformed computing.

It was five years ago today that the way software was made, distributed and paid for fundamentally changed. 

Not very long ago, buying software for your computer was a much different experience than it is today. You’d have to go to a store—yes, a real brick-and-mortar type of deal—find the box of what you need and pay somebody behind a counter. You’d have to make sure the software was compatible with your computer, install it yourself and then find a safe place for the disc in case you ever needed to reload the program.

What a massive headache. 

On July 10, 2008, Apple released the App Store for iPhone. As with many things Apple, the concept was not new: the software world had been moving to digital downloads for a while, and Palm's PDAs showed that mobile-device users wanted apps. It was the execution, scale and scope of Apple’s new App Store that would forever change the software industry.