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Over 15 billion apps downloaded via Apple App Store

Thu 07 Jul 2011 12:56pm GMT / 8:56am EDT / 5:56am PDT
MobileDevelopment

Apple has paid more than $2.5 billion to developers

Apple

Established in 1976, Apple is a multinational corporation (corporate headquarters based in California)...

apple.com

More than 15 billion apps have been downloaded from Apple's App Store in the three years since launch.

The store boasts over 425,000 apps, 100,000 of which have been specifically designed for the iPad. Apple has paid more than $2.5 billion to app developers.

"iPad provides us with an unparalleled mobile device for creating gorgeous, immersive games," said Mark Rein, vice president and co-founder of Epic Games.

"Infinity Blade has been a runaway hit with customers around the world and we couldn’t be more excited about our success on iOS devices."

Apple claims there are over 200 million iOS devices in use.

11 Comments

James Simpson
Programmer

2 0 0.0
Shouldn't it be developers have paid Apple over $1.07 billion?

Posted:3 years ago

#1

Soeren Lund
Producer

42 1 0.0
Well said, James. Apply may own the distribution channel but it is still the developers and publishers of the apps that pay for the party.

Posted:3 years ago

#2

John Ozimek
Director

6 0 0.0
Soeren - are you saying the App store is a good thing or a bad thing?

Sure, $1.07 billion from devs into Apple's pockets does sound a lot, but then again 30-70 rev share seems pretty fair? It's certainly a lot better than you used to get in the mobile content business before Apple arrived.

I don't agree with everything Apple does with the app store, but without it we wouldn't have the vibrant mobile games industry we have right now. A case of better the devil you know?

Posted:3 years ago

#3

James Simpson
Programmer

2 0 0.0
30-70 is a fair split, and I agree the app stores have helped the industry by leaps and bounds, but you don't hear google, Amazon, or even high street retailers releasing announcements saying they've "paid" developers for selling their products and waiting for the pat on the head by the media.

Posted:3 years ago

#4

Kim Pallister
Director of Content

10 2 0.2
It stuns me that every time Apple boasts these numbers, the press regurgitates it without any analysis. For starters:

Appstore's coming up on it's birthday, turning 3 on July 10. So accounting for back-end loading due to growth, this is probably ~$1.5B in the past year?

Income to Apple from each developer (having to buy a mac to develop on), let's call it $1k/app = ~$0.5B

Average revenue/title = $5800. [what really matters is what the curve looks like, the median, etc, but still..]

Also, I think that avg revenue/title is decreasing (comparing to stats released at event in March, the $ figure has gone up by 25% but the number of apps has tripled), while cost of development, I'm guessing, is increasing.

My point here is just that it's worth applying a little thought to what the numbers mean.

Posted:3 years ago

#5

Kim Pallister
Director of Content

10 2 0.2
@James: Actually, I'm not sure the terminology is that out of line. They collect the money from the end user customer, then they write checks to their suppliers, who are the developers. Somewhere at Apple is a guy saying "I've cut $2.5B worth of checks for devs!"

Posted:3 years ago

#6

Martyn Brown
Managing Director

136 33 0.2
/wonders how many of those 400,000 apps are actually reasonably profitable, even as a percentage. 5%? less? Still, there's nothing wrong whatsoever with the platform Apple provide, even if visibility has become a serious problem for developers/publishers.

Posted:3 years ago

#7

Todd Templeman
President

6 1 0.2
It’s never becoming to even accidentally come across as if one is about to pucker up to plant one one the rear of another corporation, but this discussion picks directly at a peeve of mine and something needs to be said. So I’ll speak the truth and damn how it seems.

We have been watching and waiting for a long time in this industry to see originality return to prominence. The risk is a glut of poor quality content, the upside is a wave of genres that have been under-supported and nearly ignored for about a decade now, coming back to prove that there is far more to interactive gaming than roughly 2 1/2 styles with an occasional exception.

Large publishers have publicly announced for several years that they fully realize original Triple-A content is their “lifeblood,” and they have been working against the marketplace and their own culture within publicly traded corporations to occasionally devote a real budget, and put in some real risk to a truly new project. The few times they manage it they usually feel burned.

During this time they have also “green lighted” sometimes as many as 6 new development projects per quarter, with roughly $15 million invested up front per title -- at least according to the numbers I’ve been told directly -- and I’ve seen many of them demoed in private. Nearly all were extremely good looking clones and knock-offs of products that were already on the market in their 3rd or 4th iteration and shattering records (i.e. almost certainly doomed). Almost none of these investments ever made it to a true Alpha stage and were cancelled. This is not casting aspersion on anyone. The developers put their heart and souls into these games. As a developer I could see that instantly. The publishers put in piles of cash. But market reality was and is what it is. The big problem is how many times this mistake was repeated. If one is going to lose $15 mil a pop, there should at least be value in the learning from a more expanded set of categories. But it wasn’t to be. The economic realities and requirements of life inside the systems were obviously irresistible.

So, for years we expected something to give, but we expected it somehow to happen within the console or perhaps PC side of things. Mobile was something we avoided. Until iOS.

The way we look at it, someone finally stepped up to the plate. Like so many other developers, we believed there was room for pure creativity and quality to shine, that more than just 2 1/2 genres could be successfully promoted by those who believed in their product, and now somebody has come along and handed us the chance to put our money where our mouths have been, and done so on more than a silver platter. World class development tools, reliable hardware and development platform, straightforward submission and publishing process, testing simplified, instant pricing flexibility, promo codes, gift codes, linkable product sales page, backed by massive global promotions, etc.

The results are stunning, both commercially and creatively. We are seeing apps that we never dreamed or, even had we, still would have doubted the industry could let them shine ... then seeing them get tapped as Games of the Week, or even Year.

So, as far as we can tell, with very few exceptions, every product that is not completely and objectively vile, utterly bug ridden, or trying to do something illegal, gets approved. Payments received as promised every month, on time. Complaints about difficulty in visibility? Well, we have the same struggle, but we didn’t get into this to hide from competition and I really don’t understand complaining about the facts of life. Yes, thousands upon thousands of apps get approved and published, and more are flocking in. Do you somehow not want to be where the action is?

So, Apple stepped up, and did so through it’s own natural business interests. But they could have done what so many other massive corporations have attempted in the games business: demanded ownership and controls in a way that is so arrogant it crosses the line into insulting (I’m talking about between and amongst the big boys, and not just the old developer saw), attempted to flip the royalty structure or worse. Although it never fit our business model does nobody remember hearing about the 5% deals? I could tell you the horror stories I heard from so many quality developers it would make you shudder. So, Apple acted in its own long term self interest and some might think that does not deserve gratitude, but a fleet of others have been smart enough to see their own self interest staring at them and ignored it, either willfully or because of completely understandable and irresistible forces outside of their control.

Well, that got longer than I expected. I think we’ve just barely entered a new golden age for gaming so it’s difficult for me to understand any lack of enthusiasm over it. We’ve had these times before in our industry; they were wonderful and short-lived.

Posted:3 years ago

#8
These numbers seem proof to me that the AppStore model fails for commercial console/handheld devices: $2.5bn over 4 (5?) years, and over *all* developers equates to peanuts.

I need to do the real math, but over the period where Apple has paid out $2.5bn to "external" devs, they have pocketed something between $50-$100bn in *profit* (primarily from selling profitable hardware). The software is just a lure to consumers to shell out for the hardware.

I'm not arguing anything is wrong with any of this - just that its a very different business model, and not one in favour of commercial software video game developers. There is money to be made, just not a lot of it.

Posted:3 years ago

#9
Also worth keeping in mind, these numbers apply to all apps, not just games. IMO, iOS has become a games platform because game developers adopted it as one ( largely due to the easy path to market and reasonable revenue split ), not because of any deliberate strategy by Apple....until the percentage of games caught there attention.

Posted:3 years ago

#10

Andrew Ihegbu
Studying Bsc Commercial Music

436 146 0.3
Last time I checked it cost a hell of a lot more than $5800 to make a good commercial game. How can we seriously claim that iOS is a good platform when its basically a poor imitation of Steam on a platform clearly not designed for gaming with lacklustre sorting. Sure the Dev Tools can be applauded for working well but don't get all apple feverish on me and try and tell me that the App Store is any more than hugely mediocre, sacrificing powerful controls for user friendliness and pretty GUI's in a bid to get you to pay for largely overpriced hardware, like all apple products. Trust me I'm writing from a Mac.

Posted:3 years ago

#11

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