Intel AppUp... you've heard of it, right?

by Thomas Brady

I’m currently sitting in Salon D (or C… it’s hard to tell after they hide the dividers), finishing up my lunch. That’s why I’m in here. That’s why, judging by the looks of things, the few of us slow eaters are in here. There are maybe eight people actually paying attention to the poor man attempting to address us on behalf of Intel’s AppUp service.
Why doesn’t anyone care? I don’t know where to start with that answer. First, obviously, there’s the branding problem. No one thinks of Intel as a software house. Their brand has a laser-sharp focus for most people: a symbol of whether or not you should buy this computer. You’ve heard bad things about that other chip company. What’s a chip, anyway? Who knows? But don’t buy the off-brand.
Then there’s the exposure. The only place I’ve seen any traction whatsoever for AppUp is on netbooks. Quick poll: when’s the last time you used or even saw someone using a netbook? That was a pretty quick fad. I can admit I got sucked in. I bought one for my then-fiancé, and when she’s traveling she almost misses it (she uses a MacBook now). I won one in a contest and used it for a little while as an on-site computer for client site visits or working from the bus on my commute. It was difficult to get any real work done with such a small screen and crappy keyboard. The irony in that statement is that I’m writing this post on a very similar keyboard - the ZaggMate - connected (albeit wirelessly) to the 10” screen of an iPad. Maybe hardware wasn’t the only problem with the short-lived netbook.
I digress.
While writing this, the crowd has dwindled by half. Several people have actually turned their seats around to engage those behind them in discussion. The number of interested parties is hovering around eight still.
Will there be an app store for Windows? Undoubtedly. Will AppUp ever make a dent? My guess is probably not. Every session here that deals with launching apps to the Android, RIM, or Apple app stores is standing room only. This, one would think, is the right crowd for an AppUp presentation, if there was such a thing.