2 Billion Downloads Later, Apple’s App Store is Still Going Strong
Apple today announced that a total of 2 billion apps have now been downloaded from the App Store. There are now over 85,000 apps in the store, up from 65,000 on July 14, and the number of developers has grown from 100,000 in July to around 125,000 today. iPhone and iPod touch users now download close to 6.6 million apps every day and this number continues to grow.
The App Store is obviously one of Apple’s most important assets in the mobile market. While Microsoft’s Zune HD, for example, is getting a lot of favorable reviews, the absence of an application ecosystem makes it a far less compelling product than Apple’s more expensive iPod touch product line. On the iPhone side of things, competitors like Windows Mobile, Android, and Nokia also have nothing to offer that comes close to matching Apple’s App Store – even if we assume that a lot of these 85,000 programs are fart apps and single-book eBook apps.
It would be nice if Apple gave us a better breakdown of the kinds of apps it actually delivers (free vs. paid, games vs. utilities, etc.). This kind of transparency is obviously not in Apple’s DNA, so we depend on data from third-party services like AdMob for this information. According to AdMob, iPod touch and iPhone users are more likely to buy apps than users of any other mobile platform and are also more likely to interact with mobile ads.
For developers, no matter the grumblings about the App Store approval process, the App Store is simply the largest and most lucrative marketplace for their work right now.