Apple reveals new Shinjuku store ahead of grand opening

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Apple on Wednesday announced the grand opening of a retail outlet in Tokyo’s Shinjuku ward, the first in a series of new stores, renovations and other investments planned for Japan.
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Cumulative App Store titles declined for first time in 2017, report says

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Apple’s gigantic selection of App Store apps contracted for the first time in 2017, with the online storefront shedding 5 percent of its total app count over the year, according to a report from reporting platform Appfigures.
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App Store shrank for first time in 2017 thanks to crackdowns on spam, clones and more

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The App Store shrank for the first time in 2017, according to a new report from Appfigures. The report found the App Store lost 5 percent of its total apps over the course of the year, dropping from 2.2 million published iOS apps in the beginning of the year to 2.1 million by year-end.

Google Play, meanwhile, grew in 2017 — it was up 30 percent to more than 3.6 million apps.

Appfigures speculated the changes had to do with a combination of factors, including stricter enforcement of Apple’s review guidelines, along with a technical change requiring app developers to update their apps to the 64-bit architecture.

Apple had also promised back in 2016 that it would clean up its iOS App Store by removing outdated, abandoned apps, including those that no longer met current guidelines or didn’t function as intended. That cleanup may have well stretched into 2017, as app store intelligence firms only started seeing the effects in late 2016. For example, there was a spike in app removals back in October 2016.

Then in 2017, Apple went after clones and spam apps on the App Store. Combined with those apps that weren’t 64-bit compatible and those that hadn’t been downloaded in years, the removals reached into the hundreds of thousands over a 12-month period. Apple later went after template-based apps, too, before dialing back its policies over concerns it was impacting small businesses’ ability to compete on the App Store.

To see the App Store shrink, given these clear-outs, isn’t necessarily surprising. However, Appfigures found that removals of existing apps weren’t the only cause. iOS developers weren’t releasing as many apps as they had during the growth years, it also claims.

Android developers launched 17 percent more apps in 2017 to reach 1.5 million total new releases. But iOS developers launched just 755,00 new apps — a 29 percent drop and the largest drop since 2008.

But this doesn’t necessarily mean developers weren’t creating as many iOS apps — it could mean that Apple’s review team has gotten tougher about how many apps it allows in. Thanks to the spam and clone app crackdown, fewer apps of questionable quality are being approved these days.

In addition, some portion of the new Android app releases during the year were iOS apps being ported to the Google Play platform. More than twice as many apps came to Android in 2017 than Android apps coming to iOS, the report said.

The full report also developed into the numbers of cross-platform apps (450,000 are on both stores), the most popular non-native tools (Cordova and Unity), the rise in native development, the countries shipping the most apps (U.S. followed by China) and the Play Store’s growth.

It can be viewed here.

 

Mobile – TechCrunch

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iTunes 12.6.4 Released as Minor Update to Version With Built-In App Store

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Apple has updated its special enterprise-focused version of iTunes that still has a built-in App Store for those who need it.


Download links for iTunes 12.6.4.3 have been quietly made available in an Apple support document related to deploying iPhone and iPad apps in a business environment with iTunes on Mac or Windows PCs.

The update was prepared on March 20 and released on Tuesday, according to German blog iFun.de. The version doesn’t include new release notes, so it is likely a minor update with bug fixes and stability improvements.

Apple removed the App Store in iTunes 12.7 last September, but it released iTunes 12.6.3 shortly afterwards for business customers or anyone who might still need to use the desktop software to install iOS apps.

Those who have already downloaded iTunes 12.6.3 will likely not be prompted about the iTunes 12.6.4.3 update, so they’ll have to update manually by downloading and installing the new version from Apple’s support document.

iTunes 12.6.4.3 can be downloaded by anyone, including those who have already installed iTunes 12.7. If at any point users want to update to iTunes 12.7.4 or later, they can do so manually from the main iTunes download page.
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How to Cancel App Store and Apple Music Subscriptions

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Several TV and music services and other apps offer free trials through the App Store that automatically renew to become paid subscriptions after the trial period ends.

If you want to prevent an App Store subscription from running beyond the trial period or cancel a subscription you’re currently paying for, then read on. This article explains how to cancel any App Store subscription on iOS, Mac, and Apple TV.
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Huawei makes its own app store global

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Huawei might be one of the biggest smartphone companies in the world right after Samsung and Apple, but unlike its competitors, it was lacking an in-house globally available app store. This changes now as the Chinese company announced the launch of AppGallery, available for download by all Huawei smartphones. Owners P20 and P20 Pro are lucky enough and already have it pre-installed. Huawei AppGallery screenshots AppGallery comes with 5 tabs – Featured, Category, Top, Manager, and the last one being Me where is all the user settings and app preferences. Since Huawei is…

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Google bans cryptocurrency mining extensions in the Chrome Web Store

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In an effort to prevent malicious sites from using your computer’s processing power to mine cryptocurrency without your knowledge, Google is blocking all extensions that include mining scripts in the Chrome Web Store. The danger with such scripts is that they can hog your system resources, and cause your computer to slow down and overheat. Plus, they’re easy to bake into browser extensions that may be designed and described as something innocuous and useful to you, like automatically muting tabs with sound. Google says it previously allowed extensions that mined currency, as long as they were designed specifically for the…

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Apple store in The Westchester Mall set to close May 6th for renovations

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As part of Apple’s ongoing efforts to update their smaller or aging retail locations around the world, the company’s White Plains, NY store will be closed starting May 6th for a significant renovation.

more…

9to5Mac

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Valve quietly hides Steam Machine section from its game store after years of neglect

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Valve has gone ahead and quietly hidden a link to its Steam Machines webpage from the Steam store itself, a move indicative of the ill-fated project to push a console-like transition for gaming PCs in the living room. The move, noticed by PC Gamer today, doesn’t mean Steam Machines can no longer be purchased. You can still find the live link here, and you can even purchase the recommended Alienware Alpha Steam Machine from Dell if so choose, as well as the Valve-designed SteamOS controller over on Amazon. But the “hardware” tab on Steam now only shows the Steam Controller, the HTC Vive headset, and Valve’s game streaming service Steam Link.

It’s clear Steam Machines are no longer a priority for Valve, which couldn’t overcome the product…

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Google blocks crypto mining extensions from Chrome Web Store

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The Chrome Web Store is a hotbed of sketchy browser extensions, with seemingly little intervention from Google (except for the occasional crack-down). The company already takes down extensions that secretly mine cryptocurrency, but now it is going a step further. Starting today, all extensions that mine cryptocurrency will be barred from the Chrome Web Store.

The new ban even includes extensions where crypto mining is the primary feature. Existing mining extensions will be removed in late June, but the rule does not affect other blockchain-related tools.

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