The Apple App Store is an application distribution platform for iOS developed and maintained by Apple. The service allows users to browse and download apps from the iTunes Store that were developed with the iOS SDK published through Apple.
Depending on the application, they are available either for free or at a cost. The applications can be downloaded directly to a target device, or downloaded onto a personal computer (PC) or Mac via iTunes. 30 percent of revenue from the store goes to Apple, and 70 percent goes to the producer of the app (minus an annual USD$99.00 development fee to Apple).
Apple rates applications worldwide based on their content, and determines the age group for which each is appropriate. According to the iPhone OS 3.0 launch event, the iPhone will allow blocking of objectionable apps in the iPhone's settings. The following are the ratings that Apple has detailed:
|4+||Contains no objectionable material.|
|9+||May contain mild or infrequent occurrences of cartoon, fantasy or realistic violence, and mild or infrequent mature, suggestive, or horror-themed content which may not be suitable for children under the age of 9.|
|12+||May contain frequent or intense cartoon, fantasy or realistic violence, mild or infrequent mature or suggestive themes, mild or infrequent bad language, and simulated gambling which may not be suitable for children under the age of 12.|
|17+||May contain frequent and intense realistic violence, frequent and intense mature, horror, and suggestive themes; also strong sexual content, nudity, strong language, alcohol, tobacco, and drugs which may not be suitable for children under the age of 17. Also, if the app accesses the internet it is rated 17+, consumers must be at least 17 years old to purchase apps with this rating. Whenever an app of this rating is requested for download, a message will appear, verifying if a user is 17 or older, and asking to confirm the purchase for this reason.|