Apple has officially sold 1.5 billion iPhone and iPod Touch applications through their iTunes App Store. That’s right, billion, not million. The App Store has also just celebrated its one year anniversary. That means that the iPhone has led to 1.5 billion applications being sold in just one year. These numbers are unimaginably high. That’s why we decided to help you visualize them.
Could you imagine if XBOX, Playstation, or Nintendo had 1.5 billion games sold annually? I bet the CEOs sure would like to. Since iPhone apps don’t have a “physical form”, we figured to draw a parallel to Nintendo games from the ’90s, which came in cartridges.
So, what do you think 1.5 billion Nintendo cartridges would look like?
We did the math.
Let’s say we take a standard size Nintendo cartridge. Since we were aiming toward precision here, we decided to use the gold standard of Nintendo cartridges: a literally golden cartridge from VideoGamePriceCharts (same size as regular.)
The cartridges specs (assume it is a rectangle without the empty bottom corners):
- 4.6874 inches wide
- 5.25 inches long
- 0.625 inches thick
- 3.5 ounces
So now let’s say we rack them up on pallets. For those of you who don’t know, here is a standard American pallet. It measures 40 by 48 inches.
If we lay the cartridges out 1 layer thick, exactly 72 cartridges fit. But in order to really get a good visual feel for the vastness of 1.5 billion Nintendo cartridges, let’s pile them up to the usual height of a loaded pallet – about half of an average man’s height. Since an average man is about 5 feet and 10 inches (70 inches), we will be stacking the cartridges 35 inches high.
That means we can fit a total of 4,032 Nintendo cartridges onto one pallet.
So, just how many of these pallets will we need to hold 1.5 billion Nintendo cartridges when stacked 35″ tall?
Let’s see what that means:
- Volume: 409,597,323 Liters
- Area: 4,959,066 Square Feet
- Weight: 328,124,286 Pounds
These numbers are huge. Now I realize that these large numbers are no easier to visualize than 1.5 billion Nintendo cartridges (let alone 1.5 billion iPhone apps which lack any physical form to begin with.)
So let’s make some comparisons:
One and a half billion Nintendo cartridges is the same:
In volume as…
- 164 Olympic sized pools
In area as…
- 86 Football Fields
- or 11.4 Square City Blocks (based on average sized American inner city block)
- 32,812 Elephants
- or almost 1/2 of the Empire State Building
So, what’s our whole point here? First of all, it’s just fun visualizing huge things and comparing them to other things…it’s one of our favorite pastimes here at iSmashPhone. You have no idea how many lunch breaks have been spent calculating things like the size of the sun in ants, or the size of the Milky Way galaxy in fun size Milky Way candy bars. Second of all, and more importantly, the success of the App Store is incredible! One and a half billion apps in just one year is an extraordanarily large numer. The iPhone truly did revolutionize technology.