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iOS users can now install apps directly from Pinterest with new 'app pins'

Apple and social network Pinterest on Thursday rolled out "app pins," a new type of enhanced pin that lets users of Pinterest's iOS app install pinned apps on their device without switching to the App Store.




App pins— denoted by a small "App Store" badge that also includes the Apple logo— function just like regular pins, but with some added versatility. Included next to the traditional "Pin it" button is a new "Install" button, with an additional "view this on the App Store" button below the pin's photo.

Tapping either button will bring up an App Store sheet with the pinned app's entry. The view is identical to a typical App Store page, and users can see screenshots, read reviews, and browse related apps from within the sheet.

Tapping the "Get" or "Buy" button within the sheet will ask the user to authenticate with their Apple ID password or via Touch ID, then install the app as usual. Users can then close the sheet and return to the Pinterest app, or tap a "Store" button to open the App Store app.

Alongside the app pins functionality, Apple has launched a new App Store profile on Pinterest. It remains to be seen whether Apple will expand the App Store sheet functionality to other partners in the future.

For its part, Pinterest believes it can help alleviate the App Store's much-maligned discoverability problems.

"We can be a really powerful service for app discovery, which is a problem that still really hasn't been solved," Pinterest cofounder Evan Sharp told the New York Times. "Our specialty is really connecting people to the things they want to do."

Pinterest version 4.3 is available now as a free, 40.8-megabyte download from the App Store.