Trending: Amazon Go is finally a go: Sensor-infused store opens to the public Monday, with no checkout lines

amazonappsAmazon’s PR machine has officially kicked into high gear as the company begins building interest ahead of its Wednesday press conference.

This morning’s press release from the Seattle retail giant announced that its Appstore now has more than 240,000 apps and games, or triple the selection over the past year.

The milestone itself is not particularly noteworthy, but app selection today is one of the key ingredients in having a successful platform. Developers want to know that their peers believe it’s a worthwhile ecosystem to develop for, while consumers want to know that their favorite applications will be supported before they buy a new device.

Amazon is expected to unveil a smartphone Wednesday, which will likely be complimentary to its other devices in the marketplace, including a selection of Fire tablets and the Fire TV. Two weeks ago it released a YouTube video announcing the event, which shows consumers oohing and ahhing over the mystery device. Last week, Amazon’s CEO Jeff Bezos sent his favorite children’s book to the event attendees, with the implication that it has something very different to offer with its new device.

At 240,000 apps in nearly 200 countries, Amazon has come a long way since launching more than three years ago with 3,800 apps. But it falls short of its rivals, like Apple’s App Store, and the Google Play store on Android. Both of those platforms have had more than a million apps for awhile now.

In addition, Amazon talked about other benefits to its ecosystem. It said that its virtual currency, called Amazon Coins, have become “widely popular,” with customers spending a very unspecific “hundreds of millions.” The number of new developers joining the Amazon Appstore per month also has doubled in the last year.

Other noteworthy items gleaned from a survey conducted by IDC:

  • 65 percent of developers said that Total Revenue on Kindle Fire is the same or better than developers’ experience with other platforms.
  • 74 percent of the same developers said that Average Revenue per App/User is the same or better on Kindle Fire than other platforms.
  • 76 percent of developers indicated that the Kindle Fire platform helps them connect with new market segments.
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