Yesterday, Apple hit its latest download milestone: 10,000,000,000 applications on its iPhone, iPod Touch, and iPad combined. This occurs barely a week after the iTunes store reached its tenth birthday.
The company celebrated by awarding the 10 billionth download—a free game called Paper Glider downloaded by U.K. resident named Gail Davis—a $10,000 iTunes gift card.
Speaking of iTunes, last year the tech titan achieved 10 billion song downloads on its virtual storefront. So what's the next major number Apple will crunch?
Given that the iPhone is still growing in popularity, and the iPad is merely an infant still, 20 billion app downloads is probably not that far away, especially if hey decide to include apps in their new Mac store. App developers flock to the Apple platform like nobody's business, creating some of the most creative, innovative, and popular apps around. And once the iPad 2 and iPhone 5 drop this year, more and more consumers will flock to these products as well. It's definitely going to happen a lot faster than the first 10 billion did.
As for songs, the iTunes songs store hasn't necessarily exploded in success like Apple's phone and tablet. But it has grown its user base steadily over the past decade—beginning on January 9, 2001—and has gained popularity through its diversification into other areas, such as podcasts (which Apple pioneered), movies, TV shows, and of course apps. 20 billion app download will probably happen before 20 billion songs, although given that songs have a head start, it may be close.
On the note of movies and TV shows, though, Apple TV's latest generation has come with numerous improvements: enough, in fact, to consider it viable product and not some flopped gimmick. Could this propel TV show and movie downloads on the iTunes store to a major milestone? Likely, especially when taking into consideration the growing trend toward internet-based television content streaming.
Whatever the next milestone is, you know Apple will achieve it. Even though the company's been around for more than three decades, one is always convinced that the company manages to get better year over year. If this was its prime, few would be disappointed. Yet, somehow, I think it's got a long, healthy life ahead still.