Words-worth: app

If you are in the publishing, travel, retail, entertainment, finance, food or education industries, the chances are you have already released a mobile phone 'app' or two.

by MT Staff
Last Updated: 09 Oct 2013
 Ingenious new apps arrive all the time: recently someone announced a program that will let mobile phone users find out if they have a sexually transmitted disease. App is short for 'application', which comes from a medieval French noun meaning, among other things, the act of administering a medicine. It has been used since the late 1950s to mean software you install on a computer to allow it to do something useful. In the Windows world, such pieces of software have tended to be known as 'programs'. In the Apple world, the word 'application' has always been used, possibly because 'appl-' is a reminder of 'Apple'. When Apple opened up the iPhone to third-party programs in 2008, it called them 'apps', and other manufacturers followed suit. Apple's 'App Store' now offers 300,000 of the things - some of them are even useful.

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