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Apple to award $10,000 gift card for downloading 50 billionth app

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(CNN) — Sometime very soon, probably Wednesday, somebody will download the 50 billionth app on iTunes.

Apple will give the lucky downloader a $10,000 App Store gift card. The next 50 people to download an app after that will each receive a $500 gift card.

If you’re curious to see when this might happen so you can take a shot at winning, Apple has a live countdown ticker on its iTunes Web page. However, it’s hard to say how accurate the counter is or how much the rate of downloads may accelerate as the goal gets near.

The promotion is yet another reminder of the massive success of Apple’s App Store, which opened in 2008, added to the appeal of the iPhone and spawned many bad “there’s an app for that” headlines. It also inspired online app stores by Google, BlackBerry and other companies.

The contest is open to entrants 13 or older in a country where the App Store is available. People also can enter without downloading an app by filling out an online form.

This will mark the second time in three months that Apple has celebrated an iTunes milestone. In February, Phillip Lupke of Germany received a 10,000 euro (about $13,528) iTunes gift card for downloading the 25 billionth song.

How massive a number is 50 billion? According to Apple, counting to 50 billion would take a person 1,600 years.

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