10 Billion Apps? Really?

  • Posted: 16 January 2011 08:12 PM #16

    I posted this on 15 January 2011 07:54 PM:

    In conclusion, I just don?t think that there is much of a software lock-in with either platform.

    Horace Dediu just chimed in and rebuffed my earlier post with the following:

    As the number of apps attached to any single device continues to increase, apps create increasingly higher switching costs for users.

    I just have this to say about that. I’d strongly recommend you all go with Horace’s opinion over mine.

    [ Edited: 16 January 2011 08:16 PM by FalKirk ]      
  • Posted: 16 January 2011 08:22 PM #17

    The lock-in from iTunes and the App store has merit but let’s not lose sight of the fact that Apple itself creates the greatest lock-in with the quality and value of their products.  Whose willing to give up their iMac, iPhone, iPod or Air for the competitors products?

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    Posted: 17 January 2011 11:06 AM #18

    Asymco has a nice chart

    More than 60 apps have been downloaded for every iOS device sold

    ...In September I made the prediction that total apps would overtake total songs sold by the end of 2010. That has not yet happened, but it?s close.

    The amazing story of this chart is not that apps are running at above 30 million download per day, but that the figure is growing. Growth like this is hard to get one?s mind around. Not only are downloads increasing, but the rate of increase is increasing.

         
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    Posted: 17 January 2011 11:09 AM #19

    Continuing briefly

    In the fall of 2008, there were about 10 apps downloaded for every iPhone/iPod touch. Two years later the rate was more than five times higher. There are significant implications for the network effects related to the iOS platform. End user investment in apps is even higher than end user investment in music which created a very tight lock for iPod users.

    I draw three conclusions:

    1. Apps overtaking digital music is a watershed event. Apps are a new medium: they will impact all other media.

    2. As the number of apps attached to any single device continues to increase, apps create increasingly higher switching costs for users.

    3. Apps consumption is increasing at a rate to overtake the PC software market.
    ?

    Notes:

    The total apps does not include updates.
    The attach rate is actually higher since the figures above assume all devices are still in use.


         
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    Posted: 17 January 2011 03:30 PM #20

    As I see it, in its drive to quarterly profits, business took a bad swing to the easy bucks back in the early eighties when it killed manufacturing in the US, essentially shipping the workload and workforce to the Far East. Look where such practice has got the world today. A very big China and a shrinking economy in the old land of the future. Yes, Apple manufactures in China but it designs and plans at home and its killer strategy is that it thinks and plans not by quarters but by years in advance and maybe that is the key to compete against this present world of instant profits and far away workers. Top down strategy abounds, so lost are the ideas from the minions that do the toil. (This may be the same reason the US schools fair so poorly against the rest of the world.)

    Apple?s advantage is that it does its homework and prepares for tests beyond the quarter end or the long year. Look at the time sheet. Apple begins its work on a tablet back in 1987. It produces the Newton in 1993. Packs it in by 2001; thinks about but doesn?t sell its rights, holding on to them just in case. Purchases a little jukebox affair in 2000 and the iTunes music organizer is born 2001. Nothing fancy, nothing for the competition, too involved with the next profit quarter, to get their shorts in a knot over. Apple, the great pretender, is the perceived looser who just drags on.

    Apple immediately enters the music device arena and brilliantly ties it to their redesigned jukebox that is spartan in eloquence; the trojan horse of this saga.  Apple takes over the world of music long shared by many interests so contentedly tied to the next quarter?s profits they forget to think to any future past the next quick and easy dollar mark. Then the little trojan horse evolves to a storehouse beyond music. Such is the picture and the magic that makes the Apple wizard work.

    Whether the iphone can keep within haling distance of the Android mess is not assured but can?t be ruled out. It all depends on how deep the pockets of the Android companies are for, with Apple taking the vast majority of the profits and well lessoned in the keys of steady research, the success of Android is not assured. Who knows if the iPhone5 will be a redesign that opens new mountains that Android will have difficulty scaling?

    And then there is the first generation iPad, linked with the iPhone linked to iTunes linked to the App Store linked to the computer. Such links cannot come about in a profit quarter or two. The years of thought and planning that has gone into this odyssey boggles the mind and drives the divided competition so crazy that nearing its first year the competition has still to provide a viable competitor. This is a strategized path that neither M$ nor Google has ever experienced and it’s the experienced climber I?d place my chips on.

    (Falkirk, I admire your strength of character to stand corrected. But this is to be expected of those who think outside the box.)

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  • Posted: 17 January 2011 03:52 PM #21

    @mhikl: Nice post. And only 1 of 18? I hope that this is a sign that we may expect you to share many more such contributions with us in the future.

    mhikl - 17 January 2011 07:30 PM

    (Falkirk, I admire your strength of character to stand corrected. But this is to be expected of those who think outside the box.)

    You are far too gracious, but your courteous remark is gratefully acknowledged.

    My conundrum, I fear, is that I have trouble thinking INSIDE the box. tongue laugh

         
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    Posted: 17 January 2011 04:24 PM #22

    FalKirk - 17 January 2011 12:12 AM

    . . .

    I just have this to say about that. I’d strongly recommend you all go with Horace’s opinion over mine.

    It is because of people like this why I visit the MO.

    (addendum) I’d forgotten that I had already added this point at the end of my post; not trying to be sucky. But really, MO rocks not only because of its editor and contributing staff, but equally to its thinking readers and their contributions.

    [ Edited: 17 January 2011 04:33 PM by mhikl ]

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  • Posted: 23 January 2011 10:47 PM #23

    adamthompson3232 - 24 January 2011 01:36 AM

    I read somewhere this weekend that of the 10B app downloads, 7B were made in calendar 2010. If that is the case, we’ll see more than 10B apps downloaded in calendar 2011. The numbers here are becoming pretty ridiculous. Everything at Apple now needs to be measured in billions for it to matter much. That’s an accomplishment in its own right.

    The App Store reached 5 Billion Apps in June 2010. That means that it took two years to register the first 5 Billion downloads and SIX MONTHS to register the next 5 Billion downloads. The Mind Boggles.