The iPhone's Application Store is becoming a target for pirates who have illegally cracked twenty percent of paid applications. The App Store offers about 25,000 paid apps, and it is estimated that over 5,000 have been pirated.
This is a real problem that developers, Apple and the community need to address. It is unclear how much piracy affects App Store sales. The economic impact of software piracy is tens of billions of dollars according to The Business Software Alliance. According to the study, f the amount of software piracy were reduced 10 percent over four years, the end result would be $41 billion in economic growth.
There are websites that host dozens of pirated iPhone apps, such as The Monkeys Ball, recently relaunched with 80 cracked apps. The Monkeys Ball promotes its site as "trials" to download, encouraging users to buy the apps after they've tried them. "We want people to think of these as trial apps since Apple doesn't allow trials of apps before purchase," said "Omar," one of the creators of the site,"It's Apple's fault for not putting up a trials system."
President of BeeJive, said he installed analytics software in his IM application BeeJive, and discovered 60 percent of activity comes from users who own pirated copies. "We think that current piracy of content from the App Store is much more widespread than most people realize," Yu said. Since Apple has not installed security in the App Store to combat piracy, Apps have had to enforce its own measures to disable cracked versions of its software
It is believed that Apple is aware of the piracy and is working towards a solution.