updated 04:45 pm EST, Mon January 7, 2013
Gifts for non-US iOS users included videos, music, books, apps
The 12 Days of Christmas promotional application ended its final day on Sunday with a free all-ages game app called Shark Dash. The gift capped a total of 13 limited-time free gifts from across the iTunes Store offerings and was available through the 12 Days of Christmas app, which was available in the UK, Canada, Mexico, Australia, New Zealand and selected European countries. Despite some regional variations, many gifts were identical across all regions.
After kicking off early with a December 16 offering of a Rod Stewart holiday music video ("Let It Snow"), the app began dispensing 24-hour free offers on December 26 with an EP of songs and videos from Maroon 5. The 12 Days of Christmas has its roots in Eastern Orthodox Christianity, and celebrates both the birth of Christ as well as the baptism, an even more significant event than Christmas Day for Eastern Orthodox followers. The twelfth night is also seen as the traditional day to remove the last of the celebratory foods and holiday decorations.
For Canada, the other gifts included the sports app Score! Classic Goals, an episode (in HD or SD as desired) of the BBC hit series Sherlock ("A Study in Pink"), the e-book The Red Pole of Macau by Ian Hamilton, the pilot episode of the TV series How I Met Your Mother, and the game app Sonic Jump.
The new year was kicked off on Tuesday (in Canada) with a free rental of an animated Tom & Jerry movie, followed by a two-song "single" from Ke$ha, a specially-recorded "xxmas EP" by The xx, a photo cookbook app, and a single by Carly Rae Jepson ("Almost Said It").
In the UK and other regions, the Day Four e-book was Rachel's Holiday by Marion Keyes rather than The Red Pole of Macau, the Day Five gift was an iTunes Festival EP called Holiday Gift by Ed Sheeran, the New Year's Day gift was two short films from Pixar's Toy Story Toons collection, followed by the e-book The Pillars of the Earth by Ken Follett, and the penultimate gift was a music video by teenybopper band One Direction rather than the Carly Rae Jepson single. In Mexico and possibly other places, the Sherlock episode was replaced with an educational geography app (Geo Master 2), while in the UK it was reportedly changed out for a Chuggington children's train app for some users (perhaps those with parental controls turned on). In some regions, the order of the gifts was slightly rearranged.