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Apple Support app makes US App Store debut

After a month of availability in the Netherlands, Apple's standalone hardware and software support app landed in the U.S. App Store on Tuesday, complete with customer personalization via iCloud integration, live chat options, recent service history and more.

First sighted in the Netherlands in November, the new Apple Support app for iOS bears a U.S. release date of Dec. 14, but is available for download as of this writing.

As noted at the time of its international launch, Apple Support provides users technical documents, the ability to scheduled service appointments at nearby Apple retail stores, personal support via phone, chat or email, and case history information, among other assets. In many ways, the new app is an iOS port of Apple's support website.

Once the app is downloaded and a user is logged in, Apple Support provides a list of all devices associated with that person's Apple ID. Tapping on a device pulls up a product pane with options to view specific hardware details like an iPhone's serial number and IMEI, as well as general Support Documents covering a range of topics. The product details screen also informs users of current or lapsed AppleCare coverage status.

Much like Apple's online support portal, the standalone app guides users through a series of documents that assist in self-diagnosing and solving a variety of problems. For example, tapping on support options for an iPhone 7 Plus, then clicking on the topic "Battery, Power & Charging" brings up a list of potential or commonly occurring issues.

In some instances, like "Battery questions or troubleshooting," Apple features a Support Document and link to a web article, in this case information regarding how best to maximize battery life. To streamline the servicing process, the app automatically creates a support case when navigating to featured documents.

Options for contacting a support specialist, and estimated chat and phone wait times, can be found under topics that lack sufficient support documentation. Other queries might require a user to bring in their hardware for service, in which case a Genius Bar appointment scheduling tool is provided.

The release was reported by TechCrunch earlier today.

Apple Support is a free 97.1MB download from the iOS App Store.