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Apple App Store hits 15 billion downloads

While it dukes things out with Amazon over use of the "Appstore" term, Apple says that its store has over 425,000 applications and that developers are cashing in on that success.

Apple's App Store now has 425,000 applications.
Apple's App Store now has 425,000 applications.
Screenshot by Don Reisinger/CNET

Over 15 billion applications have been downloaded from Apple's App Store, the company announced today.

"Thank you to all of our amazing developers who have filled [the App Store] with over 425,000 of the coolest apps and to our over 200 million iOS users for surpassing 15 billion downloads," Apple's senior vice president of worldwide product marketing, Phil Schiller, said in a statement.

The App Store's growth over the last few years has been nothing short of astounding. It took Apple nine months to hit 1 billion downloads, and its store finally hit 5 billion downloads in June 2010. In January of this year, Apple's store tallied 10 billion app downloads. The company celebrated the feat by giving away a $10,000 App Store gift card to the person who downloaded the 10 billionth application.

All those downloads have helped developers cash in. According to Apple, it has paid developers more than $2.5 billion since its App Store launched.

At 15 billion downloads, Apple's mobile marketplace is far ahead of the Android Market. In May, Google announced that there have been 4.5 billion applications downloaded from the Android Market so far.

However, the Android Market is hot on Apple's heels. According to Google, its store hits another billion downloads every 60 days.

On a separate front, Apple is engaged in a legal battle with Amazon over the use of the term "Appstore." Yesterday, a judge denied Apple's request for a preliminary injunction to squelch Amazon's use of the term, saying that, although the term isn't purely generic, Apple had not established the likelihood of confusion between the competing brands.

In Europe, meanwhile, a quartet of tech heavyweights--Microsoft, HTC, Nokia, and Sony Ericsson--have filed formal applications to get Apple's trademarks for "App Store" and "Appstore" declared invalid

Related stories:
• Apple loses bid for injunction against Amazon
• Google touts Android adoption
• Microsoft, others fight Apple's EU 'App Store' trademark