Apple’s total number of apps in the App Store declined for the first time last year

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The App Store’s total number of apps available decreased in 2017 for the first time in the history of the marketplace, according to analytics company Appfigures. iOS apps in the App Store shrank to 2.1 million over the course of 2017, after beginning the year at 2.2 million.

The decline can be attributed in part to Apple’s decision back in 2016 to remove old apps that were no longer compatible with newer iPhones and apps that didn’t comply with recent review guidelines. Apps that were not built on 64-bit architecture were removed.

Image: Appfigures

To add to the graveyard of dead mobile software, Apple also removed virus-scanning apps, apps that were clones of other apps, and other low quality apps that were…

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Total Number of App Store Apps Shrank in 2017 Thanks to Apple’s Quality Crackdown

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The number of apps available in the App Store shrank for the first time ever in 2017, according to data shared today by App Store analytics company Appfigures (via TechCrunch).

At the end of 2017, there were 2.1 million iOS apps available in the App Store, compared to 2.2 million apps at the beginning of the year.


Starting in September of 2016, Apple told developers it would be removing old, outdated apps that had not been updated with compatibility for more recent devices or no longer complied with current review guidelines.

Apple also created new App Store guidelines limiting apps created from commercialized templates or app generation services, and officially banned virus scanning apps, plus it cracked down on clone and spam apps, all of which contributed to the company’s App Store cleanup efforts.

Changes in iOS 11 may have had the biggest impact on the available number of apps in the App Store, though. With iOS 11, Apple stopped supporting 32-bit apps, which the company began phasing out in 2013. 32-bit apps do not open on devices running iOS 11, nor can older 32-bit apps be found in the App Store.

Since 2015, Apple has required all apps and app updates to use 64-bit architecture, so apps that became defunct with iOS 11 had not been updated in at least two years.

Appfigures says that the decrease in apps can also be attributed to a dip in the number of new apps submitted by developers in 2017. Just 755,000 new apps were added to the App Store in 2017, down 29 percent from the previous year. This too could be attributed to Apple’s more restrictive App Store policies cutting down on low-quality apps.


While the number of App Store apps has declined due to Apple’s efforts to make sure apps in the App Store are prioritizing quality, Google Play growth has accelerated. In 2017, Google Play reached 3.6 million available apps, a growth of 30 percent. Android developers released 1.5 million new apps in 2017, up 17 percent.

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Newsbyte: Total to deploy autonomous robot on North Sea platform

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total oil and gas to use autonomous robot in north sea

French oil giant Total has partnered with Austrian robotics company Taurob, and German university TU Darmstad, to develop an autonomous robot for deployment to an oil and gas platform in the North Sea.

Taurob and research partner TU Darmstadt won Total’s ARGOS Challenge, in which five teams from around the world competed to develop a robot for routine inspections and on-platform emergency operations.

The winning robot is expected to be deployed to Total’s gas plant on Shetland. It will then move on to operations on the firm’s Alwyn platform in the North Sea, some 440km north-east of Aberdeen.

The 90kg robot moves on two tracks and uses laser scanners to read instruments and valve positions. It can also measure air temperature and gas concentrations, detect abnormal noises, sense obstacles, and move with ease on slick, slippery staircases.

Read more: Shell joins digital twin initiative for offshore oil and gas assets

When working on oil and gas platforms, the priority for any machinery or operations is to avoid anything that can cause a fire.

“Our robot is also the first fully automated inspection robot in the world that can be used safely in a potentially explosive atmosphere,” says Dr. Lukas Silberbauer, who founded Taurob with partner Matthias Biegl in 2010. The robot is fully ATEX certified to ensure it doesn’t trigger an explosion while operating near explosive gases.

Falling revenues in the North Sea oil industry present one side of the argument for increased automation. But Total expects that it will also make inspections more reliable and safer.

Dave Mackinnon, head of technology and innovation for Total, believes that autonomous robots are very much here to stay in the oil and gas industry.

“Total believes that robots have the potential to play an important role on offshore platforms,” he said. “We are on the cusp of delivering technology that will improve safety, reduce costs, and even prolong the life of North Sea operations.”

Internet of Business says

The use of robots and also drones for remote or offshore maintenance – particularly in hazardous environments – is both a growing application of the technology, and ‘low hanging fruit’ in regulatory terms.

For example, a number of startups are focusing on drone maintenance of offshore wind farms in order to prove that the technology works and is safe. Authorities are happy to approve these deployments as test cases, because there are few other people around and airspace is less crowded.

In this way, the offshore energy industry is both an ideal application of robotics in itself, and a proving ground for the technology.

Read more: Aerones creates drone to de-ice and service wind turbines

Read more: DJI and FLIR launch drone tech that saves lives

Read more: The world’s fastest drone fleet is ready to service the US

Read more: Robot teachers take classes at Finland primary school

Read more: Predictability key to robot-human collaboration, finds Disney research

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Verizon now offering open enrollment for Total Mobile Protection insurance

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Are you a Verizon customer who passed on insurance when you first bought your new smartphone? If so, you’re now getting a second chance at enrolling.

Verizon is now offering open enrollment for its Total Mobile Protection insurance program. Typically you can only enroll within 30 days of buying a new device, but between April 2 and May 31, 2018, anyone can sign up.

Total Mobile Protection costs $ 13 per month for smartphones and smartwatches, $ 10 per month for basic phones and tablets, or $ 39 per month for TMP Multi-Device, which gives you protection for any 3 devices on your account. Additional devices can be added to TMP Multi-Device for an additional $ 9 per month.

As for what you get with Total Mobile Protection, you can get a cracked screen repair as soon as the same day. You can choose if you’d like to have a repair technician come to you, if you’d like to go to a repair location, or if you want to mail your device in.

Total Mobile Protection also includes coverage for loss, theft, and damage, including water damage; coverage for post-warranty defects; next-day devliery and 24/7 claims service; quick reimbursement for cracked screen repair when travelling internationally; and a Tech Coach that can answer questions about your device and the products that it connects to.

Do you have insurance for your smartphone?

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Telegram has raised a total of $1.7 billion from its two pre-ICO sales

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In February, secure messaging service Telegram launched a presale for its cryptocurency prior to an Initial Coin Offering (ICO), raising $ 850 million from 81 investors, and later that month, The Verge learned that it was launching a second private presale, in which it aimed to double that amount. Bloomberg Technology reports that the company did just that, and has raised a total of $ 1.7 billion in March between the two sales.

In a filing to the Securities and Exchanges Commission, Telegram says that it raised an additional $ 850 million from 94 investors in the second sale, bringing the total amount to $ 1.7 billion. It also says that it might “pursue one or more subsequent offerings” beyond these first two sales.

The company is…

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Digital boardgame ‘Scythe’ nears Mac and iOS release, ‘Rome: Total War’ for iPhone delayed until summer

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Asmodee reveals the current state of its upcoming digital board game "Scythe" arriving soon on Mac and iOS, as Feral Interactive delays the release of the iPhone-compatible version of "Rome: Total War" until the summer.
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‘Rome: Total War’ for iPhone Is Now Launching in Summer and We Finally Get a First Look at the Progress of the Port

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It is always great to see classic strategy games make their way to iPad. When Feral Interactive brought Rome: Total War [$ 9.99 (HD)] to iOS, many questioned how it would control and look. Those fears were mostly put to rest and we even saw the release of the expansion, Barbarian Invasion [$ 4.99 (HD)], as a standalone release. The iPad is a fantastic way to play Rome: Total War and I was quite showcked when it was announced for iPhone. A lot of PC games make their way just to iPad and not iPhone like FTL and Papers, Please due to the larger real estate available. Rome: Total War was scheduled to release on iPhone for $ 9.99 but it was delayed. We finally have a video showcasing how the port looks and how the interface is on the iPhone screen.

Today, Feral Interactive have announced a slight delay in the iPhone port. They needed a bit more time to bring the full Rome: Total War experience to smaller screens. The gameplay video above looks lovely and I can’t wait to get it just because it is still pretty mindblowing for me having games like this and Planescape Torment Enhanced Edition on a device that (used to) fits in the palm of your hand.

Rome: Total War’s interface looks very nice in the video although there are still various details we don’t have. Feral Interactive’s Tweets also confirm that all factions in the desktop and iPad version will be available in the iPhone version. Are you looking forward to building an empire on your phone on the go? Let us know in the comments. Rome: Total War for iPhone launches this summer. Check out our forum thread for the iPad version here for more discussion on it.

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Apple Recorded More Than Half of Total Smartphone Industry Revenue in iPhone X Launch Quarter

Apple captured a record 51 percent share of revenue in the worldwide smartphone industry last quarter, which encompassed the launch of the iPhone X, according to research firm Strategy Analytics.


iPhone revenue totaled $61.5 billion in the fourth quarter of 2017, as Apple disclosed in its earnings report earlier this month. Strategy Analytics estimates Apple’s smartphone revenue was three times higher than its nearest rival Samsung and seven times more than Chinese competitor Huawei.

Apple accounted for more smartphone revenue than the rest of the entire industry combined in the quarter, driven by “solid demand” for the iPhone X, said Strategy Analytics executive director Neil Mawston.


iPhone’s average selling price was $796 last quarter, up from $695 in year-ago quarter, which Strategy Analytics estimates to be almost three times higher than the overall industry average. Apple sold 77.3 million iPhones in the quarter, but it didn’t disclose how many of those sales were iPhone X models.

Priced at $999 and up, the iPhone X has undoubtedly helped Apple increase its revenue share in the smartphone industry. What’s more important is profits, however, and the iPhone often accounts for over 100 percent of net income in the smartphone industry when factoring in the losses posted by some rivals.

Related Roundup: iPhone X
Buyer’s Guide: iPhone X (Buy Now)

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Indian smartphone market saw 14% growth in 2017, total shipments cross 124 million units: IDC

Indian smartphone market has seen major improvements in shipments in the year 2017 when compared to 2016. The smartphone market witnessed a 14%  annual growth with a total shipment of 124 million units in 2017, making it the fastest growing market amongst the top 20 smartphone markets globally. The smartphone market resumed its double digits … Continue reading “Indian smartphone market saw 14% growth in 2017, total shipments cross 124 million units: IDC”
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T-Mobile spills Q4 and FY 2017 results, including 5.7 million total customers added for the year

After giving us a preview of its Q4 2017 results last month, T-Mobile this morning spilled all of the details of its most recent quarter. As a reminder, T-Mobile added 1.9 million new customers in Q4 2017, which makes that the 19th straight quarter that T-Mo added more than 1 million new subscribers. T-Mobile added 5.7 million new customers during all of 2017. Meanwhile, postpaid branded churn fell 10 basis points year-over-year to finish at … [read full article]

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