In early 2012, Apple acquired Chomp, largely to fix the broken search, recommendation and discovery features of the iOS App Store.
Two years later, app discovery on the iOS App Store remains pretty much as broken as ever. Maybe that’s why Cathy Edwards, Chomp’s co-founder who went on, post-acquisition, to become Director of Evaluation and Quality on Apple Maps, is leaving Apple come April 11.
Apple announced this week the acquisition of Chomp, an app-search startup.
Chomp CEO Ben Keighran is reportedly working already in Apple’s marketing department, and CTO Cathy Edwards is already employed as a senior iTunes engineer.
Chomp crawls the data associated with all the apps in an app store and uses a sophisticated algorithm-based search function to enable people to search and actually find the apps they really want. Less appreciated by the public (but not Apple) is what appear to be incredible analytics tools, enabling a deep understanding of what people are searching for, how successful they are at finding it and detecting meaningful trends in app demand.
Sound familiar? Search algorithms and analytics are Google’s core competency.