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Apple Promises Mother Lode to Billionth App Downloader 119

Posted by ScuttleMonkey
from the awww-twenty-dollars-i-wanted-a-peanut dept.
An anonymous reader writes "Apple has posted a counter of App Store downloads as they approach one billion downloads. The lucky billionth downloader gets to walk away with a stash consisting of a MacBook Pro, 32GB iPod Touch, Time Capsule and $10,000 iTunes gift certificate. The App Store now has over 30,000 applications."
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Apple Promises Mother Lode to Billionth App Downloader

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  • Apple Promises Motherload to Billionth App Downloader

    They promise to deliver Bristol's massive storm water drain system [wikipedia.org]?! But how will they deal with flooding?! I am dubious.

    Well, I knew this cult would cost a lot of time and money. Fellow Apple fanboys, gather your shovels and pickaxes. There is much work to be done before morning! Steve Jobs, thine will be done.

  • Mistake In Title. (Score:2, Informative)

    by liquidMONKEY (749280)
    Isn't it mother lode, not motherload?
    • by smooth wombat (796938) on Friday April 10, 2009 @03:07PM (#27534947) Homepage Journal

      Isn't it mother lode, not motherload?

      This is Slashdot. Their is no room for correct spelling or word usage. Your one of those gammer nazis who should stop being so pedantec.

    • by Red Flayer (890720) on Friday April 10, 2009 @03:17PM (#27535111) Journal
      Au contraire, mon frere -- motherload is correct.

      The billionth app downloader will have his mother impregnated via divine insemination by Steve Jobs himself.

      Henceforth this will be known as the iMac-culate Conception, and the offspring of the Holy iSpirit will be brought up as leader of the iFaithful to inherit the reins of Apple.
      • by rolfwind (528248)

        Au contraire, mon frere -- motherload is correct.

        The billionth app downloader will have his mother impregnated via divine insemination by Steve Jobs himself.

        Henceforth this will be known as the iMac-culate Conception, and the offspring of the Holy iSpirit will be brought up as leader of the iFaithful to inherit the reins of Apple.

        Someone's mother? Ah, I see, it's the slutty Version Mary.

    • Re: (Score:1, Informative)

      by Anonymous Coward

      Yes. Mother lode [wikipedia.org] refers to the discovery of bedrock veins containing gold, from which placer deposits are derived by erosion. The classic example was during the California gold rush. They started finding gold in the streams (placer deposits) first and then traced the source upstream to the bedrock of the mountains and started mining there -- which was far more lucrative.

      Motherload is the term used for, er, I'm not sure. Something to do with certain types of entertainment videos coincidentally also best

    • Mistake on website (Score:3, Interesting)

      by HTH NE1 (675604)

      It isn't the only error. I just tried their form for entry without purchase [apple.com]. They say you are "Limited to 25 entries per day", but on only my second attempt at entry it said, "You have entered to many times today".

      I'm not buying 24 apps a day. I don't even own a device to use them. Which is why I'm entering to win one.

      • by Qwell (684661)
        This is also in violation of the official contest rules (this is a "Bad Thing").
  • me likey!

    *drools some more*

    *still drooling*

    ok, done.
    I wouldn't kick that new MBP outta bed for eating crackers.
    (would we, crackers?)

    • Re: (Score:3, Funny)

      by Tetsujin (103070)

      I wouldn't kick that new MBP outta bed for eating crackers.

      It will, however, take up most of the bed. :)

  • MotherLoad implies a very heavy workload.

    Mother Lode means hitting the "main vein" of a gold or precious material mine.

    Oh, and since I mentioned Naugzteez, Godwin's law and all that...

    • Re: (Score:3, Funny)

      by Tetsujin (103070)

      MotherLoad implies a very heavy workload.

      "A man may work from sun to sun, but a woman's work is never done..."

  • by Anonymous Coward

    A big surprise in your next tax return.

  • They're currently about 60 million away. And each of those downloads gets an entry into the drawing. So if they're giving away $15,000 worth of stuff then the value of an entry is *way* less than one penny.
    • Re: (Score:3, Informative)

      by yermej (985079)
      There's no drawing. The first entry received after the 999,999,999th - whether by purchase or the non-purchase entry form - is the winner. For serious. It's in the rules.
  • So... what are you going to do with your $10,000?

    10,000 songs? :/

    Can that iTunes gift certificate be used for a new MacBook, or am I stuck with music?

  • Seems like this would be pretty easy to cheat. Just make a bunch of repeated network connections to download a small, free app.

    I'm guessing you'd need to do more than just ping their servers, but it seems like spoofing a download would be possible, provided that they aren't using hardware-enforced crypto. It's similar to the DRM problem: how do you keep iPhone users from downloading apps yet still allow them to download apps?

  • Taxes? (Score:4, Insightful)

    by ThePopeLayton (868042) on Friday April 10, 2009 @03:30PM (#27535283)
    Is apple willing to pay the taxes on all that for you? Seriously that gotta be at least 13K in prizes for which the US gov will want ~ 50%. Most companies offer people the prize or let then refuse it all together (this is what "The Price is Right" does). Most people end up turning down prizes because they can't afford to pay the taxes on them. Even if the person has the cash on hand to pay the taxes who is going to fork over 5K just to get a prize. Basically they'd be getting everything at half price. Apple knows this and is using the "prize" as just a publicity stunt..
    • Re:Taxes? (Score:5, Insightful)

      by vux984 (928602) on Friday April 10, 2009 @03:54PM (#27535645)

      Is apple willing to pay the taxes on all that for you? Seriously that gotta be at least 13K in prizes for which the US gov will want ~ 50%.

      Depends entirely on your tax bracket. And if your tax hit is going to be 50% you can probably afford it. If my brother won it (as a grad student he's got more deductions than income) he probably wouldn't pay a dime in tax.

      Most companies offer people the prize or let then refuse it all together (this is what "The Price is Right" does). Most people end up turning down prizes because they can't afford to pay the taxes on them.

      How can they not afford to pay the taxes on them? Taxes aren't usually due immediately, you usually pay them when you file your annual return.
      In the mean time, they can simply flip the prize on craigslist / ebay for 75-90% of retail, and keep the difference. (Or sell part of the prize to cover the taxes...)

      Even if were due immediately, take out a line of credit, and when you sell, pay off the line. The interest cost will reduce your profit only slightly.

      Even if the person has the cash on hand to pay the taxes who is going to fork over 5K just to get a prize. Basically they'd be getting everything at half price. Apple knows this and is using the "prize" as just a publicity stunt..

      Duh. Of course its a publicity stunt. All prizes are.

      That said, its not bogus. If you win, you win stuff. Its not like those ridiculous '2 year lease on a car' prizes which, for most people are more hassle than they are worth. (Its pretty bogus to win a nice car "for a while" and then have to give it back or buy it. And what are they supposed to do with their existing car in the meantime?)

      • by Ohrion (814105)
        Oops, accidentally moderated this comment 'funny' instead of 'informative'. I missed! Anyways, posting this to cancel my mod.
      • Re: (Score:3, Interesting)

        by Sentry21 (8183)

        I've always found it amusing that in the US, you get taxed on things you win, whereas in socialist Canada, where our tax rates are *so high*, prize winnings are considered windfall income and are non-taxable. Thus, if you won this contest in Canada, you wouldn't pay any tax.

      • by drinkypoo (153816)

        Its not like those ridiculous '2 year lease on a car' prizes which, for most people are more hassle than they are worth. (Its pretty bogus to win a nice car "for a while" and then have to give it back or buy it. And what are they supposed to do with their existing car in the meantime?)

        I'd love to have a nice car to drive for free for two years. I would drive it like it's stolen every minute, run the odometer right up to the limit of the lease right before I gave it back, et cetera. I'd sell my current car (on which I could make money, by driving it to someplace where they salt the roads before selling it) and then I'd buy another car when the lease was up. The money from the car would go into some other investment, maybe a car on which I could tinker for two years thus improving its valu

    • by Vellmont (569020)


      Is apple willing to pay the taxes on all that for you? Seriously that gotta be at least 13K in prizes for which the US gov will want ~ 50%.

      There's no 50% tax bracket, and AFAIK there hasn't been one for a long time. The current top federal tax bracket is 35%. You have to make over 164,000 to get even into the 33% tax bracket. (There USED to be a 39% tax bracket, but our last president eliminated that. Then we ran up a huge deficit. No correlation between the two, of course)

      I don't believe there's any e

    • Re: (Score:3, Interesting)

      by crossmr (957846)

      Not everyone is american and the contest isn't just limited to America.

      If anyone in Canada wins they don't have to pay jack. Canada doesn't tax income from prizes.

    • by Trogre (513942)

      See, to me the concept of winners paying taxes on a prize is utterly insane. It means pretty much any non-cash prize is likely to become a financial curse to most recipients.

      One textbook example is this poor guy [itnews.com.au] who missed out on a space trip because he couldn't afford to pay the taxes. Despicable to drive up someone's hopes like this.

      Where I come from there are still taxes payable on prizes, but the amount is payable by the drawer, not the drawee. Much much more sensible, IMO.

      But then again what do I kn

  • I wonder if 'download an app' applies to downloading updates for existing apps?

  • "As of today, nearly one billion apps have been downloaded around the globe. So we just want to say thanks â" a billion. Download an app and youâ(TM)ll automatically get the chance to win a $10,000 iTunes Gift Card, an iPod touch, a Time Capsule, and a MacBook Pro. Just go to the iTunes Store, browse the App Store, and download your best app yet." Come on Anon, at least read what you're submitting.
  • I understand some of the prizes but why would they give someone that has an iPhone or an iPod already an iPod?

    • why would they give someone that has an iPhone or an iPod already an iPod?

      As a spare for when the captive proprietary battery gives up the ghost?

  • They are still a full 70 Million downloads away from a billion. It will still be a while.
    • by goofy183 (451746)

      so if you pull out their data feed it looks like they are selling over 300k apps/hour. If you assume 300k/hour that is less than 10 days.

    • by AaxelB (1034884)
      The counter is increasing at about 100 per second. At that rate it'll increase by 70,000,000 in around 8 days. Eight days is reasonable warning for a contest, I think.
      • Far too much if you ask me. People will lurk until the last minute, at which time you will get effectively a DDoS attack.
        • by AaxelB (1034884)
          Right, but it works out best for them because of the huge mass of people who don't actually understand the contest and will download more apps now because they think they'll get more chances to win. Apple isn't doing this out of the goodness of their hearts, and a short DDoS on a single website of theirs in exchange for a boost in app downloads is an easy trade.
          • Sure. But nobody will ever really know who the billionth downloader was, because the servers will be frazzled.
          • They sort of do get more chances to win; if the winner doesn't respond within 48 hours, they randomly draw a name from all entries. If the winner is an app downloader, who knows if they'll be paying enough attention to reply? They may even think it's SPAM and delete the "You won!" e-mail.

          • by gwait (179005)

            Good point, the wording of the main tag line implies that very concept, where the official rules state the actual method of choosing a winner..

      • In the last 14 hours, it has been very close to 3 million. So, for the 68 million left, it works out to... about 14 hours. No doubt the rate will slow down overnight though.
  • The billionth download will be for the iFart which, after their loss in court will invalidate the sale. Since Apple will have provided some, but not all of said, "Motherlode" when this occurs, a litigation will ensue between customer 1,000,000,000 and customer 1,000,000,001 after the iFart app was remotely deleted retroactively.

    Pull-my-finger will join the fray as well, suing Apple for providing so much publicity for the now gone iFart and thereby disciminating against their valiant legal efforts. By b
  • Can you use the iTunes gift certificate for mac apps and apple hardware as $10,000 is a lot just for music and phone apps and I don't like today music.

  • Could you fill a 32GB iPOD touch with $10k worth of iTunes downloads?

    • Re: (Score:3, Informative)

      by Lost Engineer (459920)

      hmm

      Roughly

      (32 gb * 1024 (mb/gb) * 1024 (kb/mb)) / (60 (min/album) * 60 (s/min) * (256 kbit/s) / (8 kbit/kbyte)) * 10 ($/album) = $2910

      Yes.

  • Why enter now?? (Score:3, Informative)

    by Rastl (955935) on Friday April 10, 2009 @05:02PM (#27536367) Journal

    Per the official rules:

    The prize will be awarded for the entry (either through an app download or through the non-purchase online entry) sent immediately following the download of the 999,999,999th app.

    So entering any time prior to JUST before the counter hits the magic number is completely pointless unless I'm reading this wrong or the counter is just there for show.

    • Re: (Score:2, Interesting)

      by Frac O Mac (1138427)
      The number the counter shows is just based on your system time.
    • by andcarne (657052)
      Isn't the publication of this contest somewhat misrepresentation? The excerpt from the rules makes it quite clear the prize will go to the person downloading after the 999,999,999th app, which does in fact make downloading anything now pointless. However, on the main page of the promotion, it says "Download an app and you'll automatically get the chance to win..." which suggests that each download you make now gives you an equal chance of winning when actually there isn't any chance now, and won't be until
  • by Anonymous Coward on Friday April 10, 2009 @05:03PM (#27536385)

    Timing. The Promotion shall run from 12:01 a.m. EDT on April 10, 2009 and ends with the downloading of the 1 billionth app (âoePromotion Periodâ). For purposes of the Promotion, the downloading of the 1 billionth app is considered to be either the downloading of the 1 billionth app from iTunes or the receipt of the non-purchase entry after the download of the 999,999,999th app, whichever comes first. Only entries submitted in this time period will be accepted. Sponsorâ(TM)s computer is the official time keeping device for this promotion.

  • by Anonymous Coward

    "The lucky billionth downloader gets to walk away with a stash consisting of a MacBook Pro, 32GB iPod Touch, Time Capsule and $10,000 iTunes gift certificate."

    But I only run FOSS and non-DRM, you insensitive clods!

    • Re: (Score:1, Insightful)

      by Anonymous Coward

      if i won that .. i might become a convert to Mac :)

    • by Yvan256 (722131)

      Install something else over Mac OS X and only buy music (which are now all DRM-free, but not movies and TV shows).

      There, all FOSS and no DRM.

      (I know you were aiming for funny, but still)

  • by godrik (1287354) on Friday April 10, 2009 @05:42PM (#27536723)
    ... and ten useful one.
  • It sounds like anyone who enters the contest between now and the billionth purchase could win, not just whoever buys #1,000,000,000. Headline should be changed to reflect that.
    • by ivan256 (17499)

      For purposes of the Promotion, the downloading of the 1 billionth app is considered to be either the downloading of the 1 billionth app from iTunes or the receipt of the non-purchase entry after the download of the 999,999,999th app, whichever comes first. Only entries submitted in this time period will be accepted. Sponsorâ(TM)s computer is the official time keeping device for this promotion.

      The headline is fine the way it is. Seems like it only comes down to a random draw if there are simultaneous 'e

  • I'll substitute a fully-loaded high-end Mac Pro thank you with all the other portions of this offering. That would be more impressive.
  • Million != Milliard (Score:2, Informative)

    by Barryke (772876)

    To avoid confusion.

    Some might find this interesting, and actually is a common screw up in international media.

    USA en modern Britisch:
    10^6 : million
    10^9 : billion
    10^12: trillion

    Standard:
    10^6 : million
    10^9 : milliard
    10^12 : billion
    10^18 : trillion

    Among others, we in the Netherlands use the latter.

    FYI - http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Milliard [wikipedia.org]

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