State of the Apps – Part 2: Surprising Apps Trends and How to Take Advantage of Them

In part one, we explained why people interested in both iOS and Android app development need to learn and to be aware of statistics, market trends and how to take advantage of them to maximise their success as an app developer. In part two, we are going to give a few more stats and then delve a bit more deeply into what they mean.

The “Poverty Line” and How to Make Money on Apps

VisionMobile, a research firm that concentrates on app economics, has developed what they call a “poverty line” for app developers. According to them, an app developer who makes $500 a month per app or less is below the poverty line. Their research indicates that 54% of Android apps and 55% of iOS apps are below $500 a month in revenues.

But is the “poverty line” really “poverty?”

An individual developer could make decent money with an inventory of apps that all make $400-500 a month. At the very least, it can provide enough to make more apps feasible.

Most of all, 26% of Android app developers make more than $500 per app per month while 20% aren’t interested in the money. For iOS app developers, 34% are above the “poverty line” while 11% don’t care about the money.

How do you make money from mobile apps?

The answer is complicated. As the market for smartphones grows, many of the new arrivals to the market don’t want to download a paid app; they’re much more likely to download a “free” one. That means that the best way to make money on an app is going to be through advertising or by encouraging users to make in-app purchases.

IT research and consulting company Gartner predicted that there would be 81.4 apps downloaded in 2013. This, by the way, is the most optimistic prediction with the low end being what was previously cited–56 billion.

The most important trend here is that Gartner predicts 90% of all apps downloaded will be free apps. By 2016, they predict 309.6 billion apps to be downloaded with free apps accounting for 93% of the amount.

That means that only 10% of apps downloaded will be paid apps and that the number will decrease to 7% by 2016 if the predictions hold true. According to analytics firm Distimo, the majority of app revenues is from in-app purchases. In the US Apple App Store, 76% of all app revenue came from in-app purchases. In much of Asia, 90% of income was from in-app purchases.

While paid downloads will still rise, they will be dwarfed by free downloads. This will be very important to remember when formulating your marketing strategy for apps.

Making Money: What We Recommend

We have presented a lot of stats in these two blog pieces and we would like to tell you what we feel is a great way to go about app creation and development.

Most people in the apps industry are entrepreneurs and “doers.” When you are work- and production-driven, it is easy to dismiss games as “frivolous.” But frivolous or not, games are “in” and it is where most of the money is at.

Our foremost recommendation is a free game with a lot of chances for in-app purchases. Free games are more likely to be downloaded by the Android segment of the market but both Android and iOS are great platforms. We believe that if you are just getting started, it is wise to test a free game on Android and put out an Apple version if the Android one makes money.

Conversely, if you have an idea for a paid utility app or one that allows one to be more productive or solve a problem, the iPhone and iPad market is more likely to spend money. They spent more for their devices and tend to spend more money in general, especially for anything that makes their lives easier.

Both Android and iOS are great sources of revenue. Your ideal situation is to be able to put out any app on both platforms. While there are some differences in the two platforms, the bottom line is that if you get an app to go viral, it will be a success on either platform.

Going Viral: Yes, You Can

Nobody can predict or guarantee that any app will go viral but you can certainly do a lot on your end to give it a chance. You need accounts on all popular social media platforms: Facebook, Twitter, StumbleUpon, Pinterest. They are a great start; then get the word out.

Call 1300 650 253 today; you could be the next big success story.

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