Intel to close down AppUp online app store

The company will refund users for paid applications through Dec. 19

Intel is closing down its AppUp online application store as it sees a shift in the market and consumer needs.

Designed originally for netbook computers, the Intel AppUp center was first unveiled in a beta program in 2010, with plans to expand its scope to smartphones, TVs and other consumer devices that use Intel processors.

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The application store aimed to help develop the market for the products, attract developers to the platform and support customers. Intel Capital, the company's venture capital arm, announced in 2011 a $100 million AppUp fund to invest in companies developing applications and digital content for PCs and mobile devices.

But the needs of consumers have since changed and so also the market environment, an Intel spokeswoman said late Wednesday. The company is realigning to focus on cloud services for enterprises, developers, and operators, she added.

Some of Intel's partners like Microsoft also offer applications for download from vastly popular online stores.

The Intel AppUp center will close March 11 as the company focuses "on developing new and exciting PC innovations that will continue to shape your world," Intel said in a brief message on its website.

In a FAQ posted to its website, Intel said that after March 11, no new content or apps will be available for download from the store. Applications will not be updated or receive notifications through AppUp after that date.

"Some of the apps in the store use a special technology which protects the app from being pirated/duplicated," Intel said. These apps will work until May 15th, 2015, as long as users have the latest AppUp client installed.

Intel is also refunding users for paid applications for the actual transaction price. The refund process will be available from Jan. 28 through Dec. 19 this year.

John Ribeiro covers outsourcing and general technology breaking news from India for The IDG News Service. Follow John on Twitter at @Johnribeiro. John's e-mail address is john_ribeiro@idg.com

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