Why You Can't Always Trust Apple's Numbers

Earlier this week, Apple said that there were more than 170,000 iPad-native apps available in the App Store. Two days later, it claimed the number was 200,000. How did it find 30,000 new iPad apps in that time?

Here's the quote from today's iPad launch press release (dated March 7 in the US):

iPad runs almost all of the over 585,000 apps available on the App Store, including more than 200,000 native iPad apps.

And here is what Apple said earlier this week (March 5) when it announced 25 billion app downloads:

The revolutionary App Store offers more than 550,000 apps to iPhone, iPad and iPod touch users in 123 countries around the world, with more than 170,000 native iPad apps available.

There are two potential explanations: Apple is counting potential retina display upgrades as separate apps, or (more likely) it deliberately flattened the numbers earlier in the week to make today's launch numbers look better. Either way, it's a reminder that claims like this need to be taken with a serious grain of salt.

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Comments

    Just like the graph with Tegra 3 on it, so full of it.

      Tegra 3 isn't even as fast graphically as the iPad 2 - don't think there's much of an issue there.

      @The Author, seriously, could this be any less of an article? As another poster already said, both statements can be true. Furthermore, App numbers do increase dramatically before the launch of a new product, such as when developers are given access to the device before hand to develop their own improved apps in advance (so that there are apps which utilise the Retina display as soon as the iPad is announced). Finally, to suggest that they deliberately downplayed their own app store numbers to benefit them, is quite simply ludicrous.

    Or quite simply that when the graphic for the competition was created, they used a slightly older report that showed more that 170,000 iPad apps, and for the new one they ran some current numbers. It isn't always a conspiracy you know.

      They put those numbers in a release on a specific date. It wasn't simply a question of looking at a graphic.

    They use the terms "More than" and "Over" so both statements are technically correct!

    At least it's a figure that's more or less somewhere there. Better than, say, Samsungs figures, which are for units shipped rather than sold or maybe you can supply us with the figures for Kindle sales? No … didn't think so.

    Point is, at least it is more correct than many other companies figures. Or at least it seems that way.

    I never trust any company that is publicly listed, they will say anything to look good. Look at WOW, and look at where have they ended up?

    Apple are a marketing company rather than a tech company in my opinion. So I don't believe anything they say.

    "more than 170,000"

    last time i checked, 200,000 WAS more than 170,000. maybe android calculators see this as an error....

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