What is an app?

The word “app” is derived from “application”, which is a piece of software that runs on your computer or mobile device. Since the introduction of Apple’s iPhone, the word app has become a commonplace in the tech industry.

Apps can take on any shape or form, from a simple calculator app to a full-blown, solar-system discovery app. There are educational apps and apps targeted at business users, medical apps and even navigation apps, just to name a few categories. In fact, there are several million unique apps in the various “app stores” on the internet.

When you are translating an app, you are essentially just translating software. Like all good translation, you need to consider the context of each app you translate. For Mac OS X and iOS translations (iOS = iPhone, iPad & iPod touch) you need to think about size limitations and the specific terminology used on these platforms.


The App Store

Along with the introduction of apps on the iPhone, Apple introduced their own “app store”. Every app installed on an iPhone, iPod touch or iPad, will have been downloaded on the App Store at some point.

The iOS App Store in iTunes. All apps downloaded to a user’s iPhone will have passed through this store at some point.


There is also an App Store for apps that run on computers running Mac OS X. This is commonly referred to as the Mac App Store.  The current difference between the Mac App Store and the iOS App Store is Mac apps do not necessarily have to come from the store. Instead they can be downloaded via the developer’s website or on another site.

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CEO & Founder of Applingua.com

One Response to “What Is An App?”

  1. Starting out as an App Translator « Knowledge Base

    […] it is rare app text is verbose. Make things short and to the point. Some useful KB guides: What is an app? What is iOS? Formal or Informal Text editing tools for translators (OSX & Win) Testing apps […]


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