Apple accepting iPad apps

Apple has started accepting iPad applications for approval, sparking hopes of a new app gold rush

Apple has started accepting new iPad apps for review and approval, ahead of the US launch of the tablet-style computer on April 3.

The iPad app store will go live on the day of launch, and developers need to submit their app by March 27 to stand a chance of being among the first apps featured on the dedicated iPad store.

Many developers are yet to actually see the iPad, Apple’s touch-screen, tablet-style computer that was first unveiled in January. Instead, developers have had to run their apps on an emulator, which simulates the interface of the iPad.

Both Amazon and Barnes & Noble are creating ebook applications for the device, reports the New York Times, despite the iPad featuring its own digital download service, the iBookstore.

“We have actually developed a tablet-based interface that redesigns the core screen and the reading experience,” said Ian Freed, vice president of Amazon’s Kindle ebook division. “Our team had some fun with it”

The expected iPad app gold rush echoes that for the iPhone, which went on sale in 2007. The iTunes App Store, which launched in July 2008, sparked an “app revolution”, with dozens of other mobile phone makers and operators scrambling to launch their own dedicated portals through which customers could buy and download extra software and programs. More than three billion applications have been downloaded from the App Store by iPhone and iPod touch users to date.

However, some app developers say they will wait to try an iPad first hand before releasing an app. “As much as we’d love to be there on Day One, a misstep could kill the train before it even gets out of the station,” Wade Slitkin, chief executive of Panelfly, which makes digital comic book readers, told the New York Times.

Although Apple is launching a dedicated iPad channel on the iTunes App Store, the majority of applications already written for the iPhone and iPod touch will work on the new tablet-style device. But many developers, including games maker Ngmoco, are keen to optimise their software for the larger-screened iPad.


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