Just because many of us only use five or ten iPhone apps on a regular basis doesn't mean we should stop tapping into a variety of other options.
An article published earlier this week in the New York Times mysteriously claimed that, as far as iPhone apps are concerned, "people prefer fewer choices, and that they gravitate consistently towards the same small number of things that they like." Extend this theory to other media and you may start questioning the existence of the Internet, cable television and your neighborhood library.
The fact is, from cave painting to augmented reality, the human appetite for more media choices only increases with additional options. Even if you don't use them everyday, there is no reason not to have a variety of helpful and entertaining apps on your iPhone.
Ask filmmaker Dan Woolley, who was crushed by a pile of rubble after the earthquake in Haiti, if it was a good idea to have the Pocket First Aid and CPR app downloaded to his iPhone even if he didn't use it everyday. How else would he have known how to apply a bandage and tourniquet to a head wound or understand the importance of staying awake for 65 consecutive hours (with the aid of an alarm clock app).
Beyond accommodating one-time events, there are thousands of valuable iPhone apps designed for sporadic or seasonal consumption. You might not use an app like ProFlowers all the time, but it's a good idea to have it by your side before Valentine's Day. Fantasy Baseball draft coming up? Why not have access to hundreds of sports rotisserie apps to get a leg up on your league?
As more consumers acquire iPhones and other smart phones powered by Google's Android mobile platform, the vast majority of apps will ultimately be free. For large brands and retailers, notes Appolicious CEO Alan Warms, "the key is how to make sure when the appropriate time comes, a) you have their app and b) you will use their app."
The primary objective for corporations and individual app developers alike is to produce apps that offer enhanced value -- beyond a replica of a website -- that ultimately justifies screen space on your iPhone.