ix.Mac.MarketingName Reference Appears and Disappears from iOS App Store

Apr 14, 2011 - 3 Comments

Late last night, a reference to a “ix.Mac.MarketingName” mystery string appeared on the iOS App Stores under the required compatibility section of nearly all apps. Initially people thought it was just a bug, but the placement and wording of the text started a fury of speculation. Most unusual of course is that it’s seemingly a reference to a Mac included in an iOS app compatible hardware list. Plus the whole “MarketingName” aspect looks like a placeholder for an unnamed product.

The mystery string appeared as follows:

“Requirements: Compatible with iPhone, iPod touch, iPad, and ix.Mac.MarketingName.

Here’s a screenshot showing where the text appeared on an App Store listing:

Most of the speculation has centered around the potential of running iOS apps on top of Mac OS X, or the merging of iOS and Mac OS a la the iMac touch patent that appeared last year which showed a Mac that ran iOS in a layer atop Mac OS X.

To add fuel to the fire, this morning MacStories is reporting that the reference has disappeared, which wouldn’t be surprising if it was just a bug, or a reference to an unreleased product, but nonetheless this has caused yet another wave of speculation. This whole thing is interesting to me, especially in light of the recent Apple patents and interesting error message that you get when you try to launch an iOS app under Mac OS X (which, however, is the same message you get when launching any incompatible app).

Does ix.Mac.MarketingName mean anything? Maybe we’ll find out at WWDC 2011, which is headlined as showing “the future of iOS and Mac OS X”? Or, of course, maybe it was just a bug.


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Posted by: Paul Horowitz in Mac OS, Rumor


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  1. Jim says:

    I suspect it means that you’ll be able to use iOS apps in an iTunes window… but who knows.

  2. Douglas says:

    How about true universal apps? Mac+iOS version bundled into one app, so you don’t have to use two different app stores?

  3. Parakeet says:

    I would say this could be a reference to Apple TV but the “Mac” in the string strongly suggests otherwise, maybe a Lion feature that isn’t announced yet?

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