AWT News Update: May 11, 2016

LA's Historic Tower Theatre - Image via Wikimedia (CC_BY_SA3.0)

LA's Historic Tower Theatre - Image via Wikimedia (CC_BY_SA3.0)

iPhone 8 rumors, translator updates, a new Apple Store in a historic building, and crazy App Store statistics - they're all part of today's Apple news:

  • Apple is looking at the historic Tower Theatre in LA as the location for a new Apple Store
  • Just 1% of the monetized apps in the iOS App Store account for 94% of the revenue generated
  • Daring Fireball's John Gruber says the 2017 iPhone will look radically different
  • Google Translator can now be used to translate text offline

The text of this podcast can be found below.

Text Version

Hi, I’m Steve Sande from Apple World Today, and this is the AWT News Update for May 11, 2016.

The LA Business Journal is reporting that Apple is looking at building a new Apple Store at the historic Tower Theatre in downtown Los Angeles, California. If the report is true, that could serve as an impetus to revitalize the entire area. The Tower Theatre was built in 1927 and has 7,500 square feet of theatre space and a like amount of basement space. There’s also street facing retail space that the Apple Store could occupy, although it’s currently occupied by short-term renters.

There’s a sad statistic coming out of the US iOS App Store. Just one percent of monetized apps account for 94% of the App Store revenue, with the remaining 99% of the apps vying for just a 6% piece of the revenue pie. So who is pulling in the money? 623 publishers including Supercell (the publisher of Clash of Clans), HBO, and Spotify. Those 623 publishers made a cool $1.43 billion in the first quarter of 2016, while another 61,677 monetizing publishers divvied up just $85.8 million. The big driver in sales, according to a study from Sensor Tower, is discoverability of new apps in the App Store. That’s been a huge issue for new publishers, and a report out last month said that Apple is working on changes in search algorithms to make it easier for the audience to discover content.

Daring Fireball’s John Gruber, speaking on his latest Talk Show podcast, divulged some rumored details about the new iPhone expected in 2017. This year’s iPhone 7 is expected to look quite a bit like the iPhone 6s, but next year’s model could look radically different. In the podcast, Gruber notes that (and I’m quoting here) “…There have been some rumors, I guess, but what I'm saying is that I've heard this independently that it is completely getting rid of the chin and forehead on the phone, and the entire front face will be the display. And that the Touch ID sensor will be somehow embedded in the display, the front-facing camera will somehow be embedded in the display, the speaker, everything. All the sensors will somehow be behind the display. What I don't know, I have no idea, but whether that means that they're going to shrink the actual thing in your hand to fit the screen sizes we already have, or whether they're going to grow the screens to fit the devices we're already used to holding, I don't know.”

Now this is great news for travelers. Google Translate has been updated to add offline support for 52 languages. This means that users will be able to get translations without having to be near Wi-Fi or connected to an expensive data roaming plan overseas. To use the translations offline, users will need to download the desired language files in-app ahead of time.

We’ll be back tomorrow afternoon with another edition of the AWT News Update.