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Apple App Store nears 10 billion downloads, dangles $10,000 voucher

Apple's website is counting up to 10 billion downloads from the App Store. The iPhone, iPod touch or iPad owner who downloads the milestone app will win a $10,000 iTunes voucher.

Apple's App Store is about to pass the 10 billion downloads mark, as iPhone, iPod touch and iPad owners continue to fill their boots with apps.

The company's website is counting down -- or, rather, up -- to the milestone, at a rate suggesting that the 10 billionth app will be downloaded sometime in the next week.

In a repeat of a promotion for the 10 billionth download from its iTunes Store last February, Apple is looking to hurry the count along by offering a $10,000 iTunes voucher to the person who downloads the milestone app.

The competition is not US-only. The terms and conditions merely state that you have to be more than 13 years old, and a 'legal resident of a participating App Store country' -- the UK is one of them.

At current exchange rates, a UK winner could land a £6,300 iTunes voucher. Ever the optimists, we're hoping Apple will follow its traditional hardware-pricing policies and whack on an extra grand or two for Blighty.

The App Store was launched in July 2008, and took nine months to reach its first billion downloads. In October last year, Apple announced that it had passed the seven billion downloads mark.

By our reckoning, that means iPhone, iPod touch and iPad users are currently downloading one billion apps a month, and more than 33 million every day. US research firm Asymco has taken a different angle on the numbers, estimating that, on average, every iOS user has downloaded 60 apps for their device.