On any smartphone or tablet, the core feature is the ability to run applications. You obtain these applications, commonly known as “apps” for short, from digital distribution services called app stores.
Depending on your device, you have different options available to you. In this article, we will look at five of the major app stores.
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Amazon’s Appstore offers one app a day completely free. In addition, you have the ability to try any application for free for up to 30 minutes with the “Test Drive” feature. Unfortunately, Amazon gift cards you receive cannot be applied to the app store.
Amazon has a program called “Amazon Coins,” in which you can earn coins for buying certain apps. It is essentially a rewards program for the Amazon Appstore. These coins can be redeemed for other apps! You can also gift coins to other people and Amazon occasionally gives coins out or promotional purposes, though the latter may expire by a certain date depending on the deal. If you are short of a few coins for a specific game or app, you may purchase them separately for about a penny each.
Apple (iOS) App Store
Developing applications for the iPhone is simpler due to the consistent hardware configurations between iPhone models. This means that app developers tend to release their applications on the Apple App Store before working on Android versions. Even when they come out, Android versions of the applications have many more performance issues due to the variations in Android phone hardware.
iTunes gift cards work for the App Store as well, providing a convenient way to spend your gift money how you want to.
BlackBerry World, the app store for BlackBerry smartphones and tablets, is very developer-friendly. The store provides various tools to aid developers in creating applications that take full advantage of BlackBerry features.
Similar to the Apple App Store, developing applications for the BlackBerry is simpler, thanks to the phones’ hardware configurations. Because the phone is less popular than the iPhone and Android devices, however, not as many developers produce applications solely for this marketplace which limits the number of apps available to users.
Google Play Store
The Google Play Store, also known as the Android Market or Android Marketplace before it was combined with Google’s other media stores, provides apps for devices running Android operating systems. You can purchase Google Play gift cards; they are available in many countries and they can be used on anything in the Google Play Store.
One reason Google’s Android market is a problem is the frequency of malware in applications. Android is a popular target for hackers and many apps with malware get into the Google Play Store.
Windows Phone Store
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The Windows Phone Store, previously known as the Windows Phone Marketplace, is only available on smartphones running the Windows Phone operating system. On your phone or on the Windows Phone website, the application-specific section is under the title “Apps+Games.” If you have an Xbox gaming console, you can find many apps that connect to Xbox Live for added game immersion.