Apple’s iMessage App Store is launching today as part of the release of iOS 10, marking the biggest change to the iOS messaging service since its launch. Users will now be able to buy apps, games, and sticker packs exclusively for use within iMessage. Coupled with new messaging features like disappearing texts it’s clear that Apple wants you to step back away from Snapchat or Facebook Messenger and come back home.
With iMessage apps you’ll be able to get sports scores from ESPN, quickly send your location from Citymapper, or play Words With Friends directly from within iMessage. OpenTable, Star Walk, Square Cash, and more are already available in the app store for your downloading pleasure on launch day.
And yes, it can get a little obnoxious:For those of you who like adding your favorite corporate intellectual properties to your love notes, Apple’s official iMessage Sticker packs from brands like Disney, Sanrio, and Bandi Namco are sure to have your loved one’s saying “why’d you send me a Hello Kitty?” Cost for the packs varies. If you want to send Star Wars or Disney stickers you’re going to have to pony up $1.99, but there are plenty of free options available as well. Just remember to turn off your kid’s ability to make App Store purchases and you’ll be fine. Unless you yourself also has a sticker addiction.
If you didn’t see iOS 10 in your updates this morning don’t worry, it’s available to download as of 1PM ET/10AM PT.