Mystery 'ix.Mac.MarketingName' Reference May Suggest App Stores Merger

By on April 14th, 2011 07:35 GMT

An ‘ix.Mac.MarketingName’ designation appearing under the requirements for some iOS applications may indicate a potential merger between Apple’s iPhone, iPad and Mac application stores, though we note this is pure speculation on our behalf.

At the time of this writing, Men vs Machines is one of the several applications on Apple’s iOS App Stores that show the strange ‘iX’ listing in their requirements.

“Requirements: Compatible with iPhone, iPod touch, iPad, and ix.Mac.MarketingName. Requires iOS 3.0 or later.”

The Facebook app also shows it.

The text ‘ix.Mac.MarketingName’ seems to be a placeholder where ‘Mac’ could be replaced with ‘iPad,’ or ‘iPhone’ - i.e. “ix.iPad.MarketingName,” “ix.iPhone.MarketingName.”

If this were to be the case, what’s ‘Mac’ doing in the iOS App Stores? There are two possible scenarios here, we believe.

One involves the aforementioned theory, in that Apple is making preparations to merge all App Stores into one.

While it does seem far fetched, it could well help the company’s ongoing efforts to trademark the ‘App Store’ dubbing.

The other (admittedly more plausible proposition) is that Apple’s iTunes Connect backend is acting up because of a glitch.

A suite of web-based tools that allows developers to submit and manage their applications for distribution on the App Store, iTunes Connect offers services like: request promotional codes; obtain sales and finance reports; and manage metadata.

iTunes Connect is used for both iOS and Mac application submissions.

When uploading their binaries for approval, developers must fill out forms with the metadata pertaining to their app, including hardware and software requirements.

It may just be that an iTunes Connect bug is causing a leak of information between the iOS and Mac App Stores, perhaps bridging their system requirement fields.

One way or another, we think it’s an interesting find, and something worth talking about in the comments below. Fire away!
Screnshot of one app showing the 'requirements' in question
   Screnshot of one app showing the 'requirements' in question
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