In advance of the fifth anniversary of the App Store, Apple picked two book-based iOS apps for its top 10 apps and games of the past half decade: Barefoot World Atlas and Mark Bittman’s How to Cook Everything. As part of the promotion, all 10, which include five games (Tiny Wings anyone, or Infinity Blade II?) are being made available through July 14 by their publishers for free in a special section of iTunes. The book-based apps were selected from among the more than 900,000 apps currently available, up from 500 when the store launched in July 2008.
Barefoot CEO and cofounder Nancy Traversy says of the selection, “We are absolutely thrilled that our very first app has received this recognition from Apple.” The atlas app has had well over 100,000 downloads since its launch in March 2012, and has had more than two million downloads since Monday. It has been featured as an App of the Week in both the U.S. and U.K. and on NBC’s Today Show. It was also nominated by Time magazine as a top 25 children’s app. Barefoot World Atlas was jointly published with Touch Press, creator of The Elements app, one of the first apps available for the original iPad. Both the atlas app and Siri, the iPhone’s personal assistant, rely on the Wolfram Alpha knowledge engine to update facts.
“We expect that this will bring tremendous attention to the How to Cook Everything apps and the brand,” says Linda Ingroia, executive editor, culinary at Houghton Mifflin Harcourt. Not counting this week’s downloads, there have been more than 300,000 paid app downloads for the How to Cook Everything universal app since its December 2010 release; more than 1.2 million paid and free for the How to Cook Everything family of apps, which include apps on vegetarian and essential cooking.
How to Cook Everything has long been acknowledged as an iOS top app, as Ingroia points out. It is featured in the iTunes App Store recommendations, including the Starter Kit, App Essentials, Cooking/Recipes collection, and Apps for Parents/Mealtime. How to Cook Everything second edition was also a Starbucks App Pick of the Week in January 2012.