Report Shows App Store for iPhone & iPad Each Outgross Android

| News

Apple’s App Store for iPhone and iPad has been the largest software download service for mobile devices since its release, but a new report from research firm Distimo shows that even when broken down by device, Apple’s App Store(s) handily trounce Google’s Android Market. Looking at the top 200 grossing apps, Distimo reported that Apple’s iPhone app sales bring in more than four times what Android Market generates.

Distimo Chart

Source: Distimo
(Click the image to see a larger version)

The information is part of Distimo’s Full Year 2011 report on all the major mobile app stores. According to that report, “nearly all of the app stores” more than doubled the total number of available apps over the course of 2011, and Windows Phone 7 Marketplace increased its apps by more than 400 percent.

Stunningly, if you combine the seven major app stores (Amazon, Apple iPad, Apple iPhone, Appworld Android Market, Nokia’s Ovi, and Windows Phone 7 Marketplace), there are more than one million total apps available. Most of those are on Apple’s App Store and Android Market, but the total number is still quite remarkable.

We should also emphasize that while Apple considers iPhone and iPad apps to be part of the one App Store, Distimo is breaking them out separately.

The chart below tracks the total number of apps available in each of the app stores over the course of 2011 (December is obviously excluded, despite the “Full Year” name of the report). It shows that Google’s Android Market has narrowed the gap with Apple, though that requires separating iPhone and iPad apps.

It also shows that even when you do separate iPhone and iPad apps, Apple has the #1 and #3 app stores in terms of available apps (though it’s also true for total downloads and revenue generated). The rests of the pack lags far behind for battling out who is tops in the also-rans, and the number of total non-iPad tablet apps wouldn’t even show as a blip on the chart.

Distimo Chart

Source: Distimo
(Click the image to see a larger version)

Another interesting piece of data from the report is the fact that Apple’s App Store downloads in China have been increasing “dramatically.” The firm said that when looking at the top 300 paid and free apps, China downloads now represent 30 percent of iPhone app downloads, and a remarkable 44 percent of iPad downloads.

Considering that Apple has only recently gained a foothold for its products in China, this data suggests a major upside for the company in the Chinese market.

Distimo Chart

Source: Distimo
(Click the image to see a larger version)

Distimo also looked at games, and noted that Windows Phone 7 has grown to be the fourth largest app store when looking at the total number of games available. Games are seen as an important driver for app use on mobile devices. Amazon’s Appstore for Android is the fifth largest app store for games.

Lastly, Distimo notes a specific dip in app downloads on Apple’s App Store just before the company rolls out new iPhone and iPad models. The firm saw a dip in downloads during February for iPad apps, while September showed a dip in iPhone downloads. Apple released the iPad 2 at the end of February, while the iPhone 4S was released in early October.

Comments

mhikl

You point out the facts, Bryan, and leave the speculation to us. Taken together, Apple?s size is largest, n’est ce pas?

We see the competition doing the best they can and we worry. We also often speculate that Apple?s hands are forced . . .  forced to follow? Then Apple leads down a road not taken or less travelled by. What a curious company.

Good article.

mrmwebmax

+

Bryan or anyone,

Something that has always amazed me about apps is the price. It’s $0.99 typically for a commercial app, and I’m sure this almost-no-price-of-entry is why the app market exploded. But does anyone know how that price was originally conceived? Was it based on the iTunes song model?

These aren’t songs, though. They’re sophisticated computer programs. Anyone have an Atari 2600 back in 1980? A game cartridge cost $20 typically, with some as much as $40. Yet I can buy Angry Birds for $0.99 and they keep releasing new levels for free. (Rovio, I’ve burned through all of Angry Birds 2.0, and all unlocked AB Seasons 2011/12 levels to date. As well as all AB Rio levels. Need more please, especially Rio!)

I’d be very curious to know how the $0.99 standard came about, especially as developers can set their own prices.

mhikl

I?d be very curious to know how the $0.99 standard came about, especially as developers can set their own prices.

mrmgraphics, I have always just assumed it was a price that would entice the average buyer to jump without caution. I have a number of 99? apps I dumped as soon as I got them; others were the bargains I had hoped for. I have spent more and been disappointed, but for 99?, dog or diamond, I have not suffered that emotion.

mrmwebmax

+

mrmgraphics, I have always just assumed it was a price that would entice the average buyer to jump without caution.

Agreed from the buyer’s perspective. I just wonder what made all commercial app developers adopt the model, en masse, from the beginning, especially before the viability of the App Store was known.

anthony

tell adobe to jump on the 99 cent app for android please. They are charging 9.99 for stuff that I havent seen a update for yet!

graxspoo

I wonder if these figures include ad revenue. I have heard that Android apps tend to be ad supported, so things might not be quite as unbalanced if those revenue streams were included.

The low price point of most apps is a big problem in terms of bringing ‘real’ applications to iOS. At 99 cents an app is either a doo-dad, or it is being sold at a loss.

I also find that the App Store is not as nice or informative a browsing experience as using the web.

mhikl

I just wonder what made all commercial app developers adopt the model, en masse, from the beginning, especially before the viability of the App Store was known

Mrmgraphics, I think biiball was one of the first games and, if I remember correctly, it was $5. I thought that was the pricing in the beginning. When i eventually got it, it was 99?.

Martin Hill

Distimo’s continual insistence on artificially separating iPad and iPhone app “stores” verges on fraudulent considering some 61% of iPad apps are universal and work on both iPhone and iPad. 

This is particularly suspect considering all Android apps are bundled together.

Is Distimo really so transparently trying to artificially boost the apparent share of Android that they resort to these dubious tactics?

When you count all iOS apps together, you see that Android app numbers are not gaining on iOS, but rather that iOS app numbers are increasing at a greater rate than Android.

FalKirk

I wonder if these figures include ad revenue. I have heard that Android apps tend to be ad supported, so things might not be quite as unbalanced if those revenue streams were included.

I do not believe that these figures include Ad revenue. However, Google’s Ad revenue appears to be much smaller than previously thought.

-Google recently stated that they made 2.5 billion from their mobile advertising revenue.

http://247wallst.com/2011/10/14/googles-mobile-advertising-up-2-5x-goog-aapl-msft-ssnlf/

-This number includes ALL income from all mobile advertising, not just Android.

-Google recently testified that two-thirds of their mobile search revenue came from Apple’s iOS.

http://9to5mac.com/2011/09/21/google-23rds-of-our-mobile-search-comes-from-apples-ios/

-Google has had to expend time and resources to create and maintain Android, which they give away for free.

-Google is in the process of buying Motorola, in order to support Android, for 12.5 billion dollars.

-Even if one assumes that all of the 2.5 billion dollars in mobile services came from phones (which it did not), the most Google could be making per year would be ~$833,333 after you strip out the revenues coming from iOS devices. Since Google has spent considerable time and energy to create and support Android, and since Google recently committed 12.5 billion for the acquisition of Motorola in order to support their Android project, it will take Google a very, very long time just to break even on their Android investment.

skipaq

This research deals with App sales. The cash flow to developers is a simple matter of a percentage. When it comes to ad revenues the cash flow to developers is not so straight forward. What Google makes from these ads is part of a separate stream of income:

App sale $ go to developers and app store owners.
Ad sale $ go to the Ad server and an Ad agency.

Sales from Apps are directly tied to a platform (Angry Bird iOS sales or Android sales for example.)
Sales from Ads cross over the platform boundaries. There is a relationship to App sales when Ad sales are considered; but this benefit goes mainly to Google. Revenue is revenue whether it comes from Ads on Android or iOS.

This research covers a fairly simple comparison of the platforms. However, when you start talking about different revenue streams the comparisons become much more complex. The results of one platform over another to any entities involved in one or both are not readily apparent.

Log-in to comment