Apple’s App Store: 4 Years Old

Apple’s original iPhone was released more than five years ago, without the ability to install apps on the phone.

About one year later, on July 10, 2008, Apple’s App Store launched.

Only 500 applications were available for download at launch, but the number of applications quickly grew as people saw that third-party apps were able to address the needs of even small groups of users.

As of June 2012, the store offers more than 650,000 applications. Of those, approximately 236,000 are for the iPad and a whopping 567,000 are for the iPhone.

Distimo touches on the some of the highlights of the App Store:

  • Since July 2008, the App Store has seen more than 30 billion downloads, which have generated more than $5 billion in revenue for iOS developers. Expect those numbers to keep climbing. In May 2012, Apple made the App Store available in 32 additional countries.
  • The App Store is available in nearly 200 countries. The top 10 countries downloading the 100 most popular free apps are the United States, China, Japan, the United Kingdom, Germany, France, Canada, Italy, Australia and South Korea.

  • Among the 100 highest-grossing apps in all countries, revenue over the last two years has tripled, “solely driven” by in-app purchases. The proportion of revenue from free applications with in-app purchasing has increased from 7 percent to 68 percent.
  • In June 2010, 7 percent of app revenue came from in-app purchases within free apps, while 22 percent came from in-app purchases in paid apps. In June 2012, those figures evolved to 68 percent and 16 percent, respectively.

  • The number of downloads “among the 200 most popular applications per available app in the Apple App Store for iPhone,” wrote Distimo, “decreased from 15.4 at its height to 8.4 in June 2012.”
  • Localization is of the utmost importance for successful global app development,” writes Distimo. While some apps, like Angry Birds, are able to attract a global following, in most countries, the top 200 most popular and highest-grossing applications, says Distimo, are related to localized content.

  • While downloads are skyrocketing, the payout to developers isn’t keeping pace. While the volume downloads for the 200 most popular apps has increased by 13 percent, the average selling price has fallen by 16 percent. Over the last two years, reports Distimo, “the daily revenue among the top 200 most popular paid applications decreased by 5 percent over the past two years.”
  • While games have been a large driver of in-app purchases, the overall category is actually beat by the Newsstand. In this category, 91 percent of the top 300 most popular free Newsstand applications feature in-app purchasing.

Apple’s hardware and software vision – combined with Google’s “open access” philosophy – created an unstoppable force that has transformed the world.

Posted by Sam Churchill on .

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