Apple acquires Chomp app search engine to enhance App Store

Posted:
in iPod + iTunes + AppleTV edited January 2014


Apple has acquired Chomp, a search engine designed to find and discover apps for iPhone, iPad and Android. The purchase appears intended to enhance software discovery the App Store.



According to a report by the Wall Street Journal, the San Francisco-based Chomp was founded in 2009 and has raised $2.5 million in funding.



Apple has been frequently questioned about how it plans to spend its nearly $100 billion cash pile, but Chomp is only the second acquisition the company has made this year, following the January purchase of Anobit. The price of Chomp wasn't announced, but Bloomberg later reported that Apple paid $50 million.









Apple's App Store has limited search and discovery features, something Apple has worked to improve. Chomp's website and mobile app offer term search, sale listings, trending apps, new apps and other categories intended to make it easier to discover specific apps among the library of what is now more than 550,000 titles in the App Store.



Chomp currently powers Verizon's Android app search, and offers both an Android app and features search of Android apps on its website, all of which Apple is likely to terminate.



Apple's acquisitions are often talent based, and Chomp executives are reportedly now working in iTunes Marketing and as Senior iTunes Engineers. Previous recent Apple acquisitions resulted in the products and services of iAd, iTunes Match and Siri.



[ View article on AppleInsider ]

Comments

  • halhikerhalhiker Posts: 110member
    I think Apple's cash pile is $100 Billion, not $100 Million
  • digitalclipsdigitalclips Posts: 15,026member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by halhiker View Post


    I think Apple's cash pile is $100 Billion, not $100 Million



    You beat me to it, that's quite a rounding error.
  • aaronjaaronj Posts: 1,543member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by digitalclips View Post


    You beat me to it, that's quite a rounding error.



    I wish my bank would make that same error, but in reverse.



    This sounds like an interesting acquisition, and improved searching capabilities in the App Store would certainly be welcome.



    I wonder what Android will do to replace it?
  • wurm5150wurm5150 Posts: 763member
    Huge small acquisition by Apple.. 500K+ apps, it's a headache searching for great apps.
  • nagrommenagromme Posts: 2,834member
    I think it?s odd how App Store searching works so differently on iTunes vs. iPhone vs. iPad. I like the iPad version the best: you can filter and sort your searches more easily. Still room for improvement though.



    Nothing jumps out at me about Chomp?s front end, but I suspect their back-end skills are what this is about anyway.
  • SpamSandwichSpamSandwich Posts: 23,594member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by nagromme View Post


    I think it?s odd how App Store searching works so differently on iTunes vs. iPhone vs. iPad. I like the iPad version the best: you can filter and sort your searches more easily. Still room for improvement though.



    Nothing jumps out at me about Chomp?s front end, but I suspect their back-end skills are what this is about anyway.



    I imagine they've managed to solve a problem in an elegant way that has eluded Apple, or they may also have some solid IP (patents) Apple wanted.
  • macky the mackymacky the macky Posts: 4,572member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by SpamSandwich View Post


    I imagine they've managed to solve a problem in an elegant way that has eluded Apple, or they may also have some solid IP (patents) Apple wanted.



    Apple picking up "search" patents... now there is an interesting thought...



    As for what they paid for this company, the negotiations ended and the Apple executive asked, "Do you take plastic, or would you prefer cash?"



    <briefcase goes *click*>
  • rot'napplerot'napple Posts: 1,839member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by halhiker View Post


    I think Apple's cash pile is $100 Billion, not $100 Million



    Probably watching the "Austin Powers: International Man of Mystery" movie while writing this report!







    Gotta love them Fembots!






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  • chabigchabig Posts: 583member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by digitalclips View Post


    You beat me to it, that's quite a rounding error.



    The editors are off tonight. It shows in the dock connector story too.
  • lighteningkidlighteningkid Posts: 352member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by halhiker View Post


    I think Apple's cash pile is $100 Billion, not $100 Million



    That would be a crazy amount of money; you've got to be kidding, dude!



    (I'm just joking, in case anyone missed that.)



    On a more related note, whatever happened to Matt Casamassina? Wasn't he supposed to fix game discovery in the store? Or did he maybe contribute to Game Centre?
  • splash-reversesplash-reverse Posts: 646member
    I wish Apple include video snapshots of apps in iTunes rather than relying on developers' website to show potential buyers how their apps look like esp. games.
  • andyappleandyapple Posts: 152member
    Chomp incorporates the same limitation as Apple's App Store— it only provides a small number of results per page. No reason for that if one is on a high speed connection, just wastes time having to navigate back and forth through multiple pages. What ever happened to scrolling?



    My pet peeve regarding this subject on the iPad remains: search criteria reverts to "all" when returning from each page of results, what a PITA.



    Can't help thinking that for Apple, terminating Chomp's service for Android might be more than just the icing on the cake of this new acquisition. Siriously.
  • drfrotdrfrot Posts: 2member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by AppleInsider View Post


    According to a report by the Wall Street Journal, the San Francisco-based Chomp was founded in 2009 and has raised $2.5 million in funding.



    Guys, you might want to acknowledge the fact this story came from @parislemon.



    He seems quite pissed about it: http://parislemon.com/post/181820949...cking-bullshit
  • vanfrunikenvanfruniken Posts: 229member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by nagromme View Post


    I think it?s odd how App Store searching works so differently on iTunes vs. iPhone vs. iPad. I like the iPad version the best: you can filter and sort your searches more easily. Still room for improvement though.



    Nothing jumps out at me about Chomp?s front end, but I suspect their back-end skills are what this is about anyway.



    Any improvement concerning better discoverability on the AppStore(s) is good news.



    While Apple is at it, I hope they will also fix a major flaw in the filtering of reviews by national AppStore.

    In small countries, you can't see meaningful reviews (too few of them) or meaningful rating statistics even though most people have a good enough command of English.

    It is just annoying to have to switch to e.g., the US AppStore (losing context in the mean time) to inspect the reviews, and then back (losing context AGAIN).



    Incidentally, the same flaw exists in the iTunes Music store.



    Most content is relevant to a much wider audience than the local community (or country, for that matter. English for example is not only spoken in the US...)

    Please Apple, make the scope for the reviews configurable.

    I can understand that most western people will still want to filter by character set (cyrillic, chinese, etc.) or by language, but in my country, many people can read easily 3-5 languages.



    I find inspecting the reviews on Apple's stores a major hurdle because of the current restrictive way of filtering. DUH!
  • adrianjnycadrianjnyc Posts: 35member
    I hope Apple completely revamp both the App Store and iTunes.



    It's time for a much needed facelift.
  • MarvinMarvin Posts: 13,533member, moderator
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by AppleInsider View Post


    Apple's App Store has limited search and discovery features, something Apple has worked to improve. Chomp's website and mobile app offer term search, sale listings, trending apps, new apps and other categories intended to make it easier to discover specific apps among the library of what is now more than 550,000 titles in the App Store.



    It does a few things better:



    - it's faster than the App Store but this is likely due to load

    - it shows better screenshots but they likely won't be shown on an iPhone

    - it shows app rating on every app link, something the App Store should have had long ago



    The downsides are:



    - it uses all the same categories as the App Store. Battlefield is listed as an adventure game beside Monkey Island.

    - it has no advanced search, no searching by rating, price range, download size

    - no way to exclude apps you aren't interested in

    - no way to sort a search based on various criteria, rating, price

    - no list view, just pages and pages of apps

    - not intelligent search, if you type 3D game, it lists games with the word 3D in the title or description, not games that by their nature are 3D



    As suggested earlier, I would say the purchase has to be for the people rather than the website. Hopefully they will implement a different set of search features.
  • andyappleandyapple Posts: 152member
    Yeah, I've been playing around with Chomp now, both the website and the free app, and I must concur with Marvin. The site itself offers little advantage over the App Store, maybe the rating system is better, meh, every thing else is worse. Their [iPhone] app claims to be able to find iPad apps but there is absolutely no such function that I could find. In fact, Chomp offers no way even to discern between iPhone and iPad apps, you end up having to navigate to the App Store anyway just to see. And there are numerous bugs in the way the whole thing works, both the app and the web site. All of a sudden I have a new found appreciation for the App Store. Hope Apple didn't pay a lot.



    Oh, and there is a five star review of the Chomp app by someone going by the name of Ben Keighran. Wonder if that is the same B.K. who is Chomp's C.E.O., or if he was pwned?
  • mdriftmeyermdriftmeyer Posts: 6,750member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by drfrot View Post


    Guys, you might want to acknowledge the fact this story came from @parislemon.



    He seems quite pissed about it: http://parislemon.com/post/181820949...cking-bullshit



    Then he should whine to the WSJ who is the paper that screwed him. AI is just citing the WSJ. I doubt they want to get in the middle of this little spat, but if this ``writer'' were smart he'd contact AI and give a more insightful article and proof of his news and how it's more pertinent than the WSJ.



    At least, that's how I'd swing it going up against a big publication just poaching the story.
  • mobitily1mobitily1 Posts: 1member
    Ya, chomp is a very good in finding new apps. It's a great that Apple have acquired Chomp.
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