Apple Patents Method to Share iOS Apps, Mac Apps

With the iOS App Store in full swing and its Mac App Store scheduled to open soon, Apple is hoping to extend its leadership in the app market and drive further sales in its digital storefront with a new way for users to share and discover meaningful apps. If your best friend has a cool new game–let’s call it Title Z–that you just saw her play on her new iPhone, and of course you want to download Title Z for your iPhone but may not remember the title later or may not want to purchase right away for fear of making an impulsive purchase in haste. Well, your friend can set up a peer-to-peer ad-hoc network using WiFi or Bluetooth, and share the game with you. Restrictions can be placed on the game by Title Z’s developers, which can establish how long the game can be lent for, what levels can be played and unlocked, and so forth, but at least you can demo the game for a period of time before committing your hard earned cash. Best part is that developers can also now reward users for word-of-mouth promotion. Once you download the game, a developer can reward your friend by giving her points, cash, coupons, or promo codes. That way, your friend can use her newfound commission to subsidize her purchase of purchase Title X and then lure you in to play that game as well, starting a new cycle of app discovery.

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