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Thursday, September 06, 2012, 04:24 pm PT (07:24 pm ET)

Apple further refines App Store for iOS 6, revamps 'Featured' and 'Top' content lists

New tweaks made to the App Store in IOS 6 beta reveal Apple is working hard to have the Chomp-inspired app ready for launch when the operating system debuts alongside a next-generation iPhone next week.

Earlier this week, AppleInsider offered a first look at the changes Apple was making to the App Store for iOS 6 beta, particularly the activation of Genius for apps, and it appears further refinements have been made regarding how the app handles featured content.

As for the iPad version, the iOS 6 beta's App Store is becoming increasingly interactive with a new prominent "Cover Flow" UI akin to the feature seen in the iOS Music app. Instead of album art, users can flip through top app categories which now reside at the head of the page.

Below the Cover Flow selector are two rows of icons representing specialized app compilations seen in iOS 5's "App Store Essentials," like "Apps Starter Kit" and "Editor's Choice." Users can now smoothly scroll through selections, unlike the iOS 5 version which used a stepped interface that only allowed three icons to be displayed at once.

iPad App Store


Selecting a featured icon brings a user to the familiar two-column app list associated with the compilation, however as of this writing the usual large heading describing the contents of the app package is missing.

App Store List


On the iPhone, the "Featured" landing page is similar in design to the iPad version, however interaction is limited to two scrollable rows of app compilation icons. The Cover Flow feature seen on the iPad iteration is replaced by a single large icon, though this may change by launch.

iPhone App Store


Users can scroll vertically to find a specific category and scroll horizontally to browse apps within those categories. In iOS 5, users had to select a featured compilation which would take them to a new page containing the corresponding apps.

Featured


Also new for both the iPad and iPhone is the renaming of the "Top 25" tab, which is now called "Charts," however it appears that no functional changes have been made to the category.

Apple is expected to introduce iOS 6 alongside a next-generation iPhone on Sept. 12 as the company sent out invitations on Tuesday all but confirming the handset's release.