Happy New year to you.
Or rather 'Appy New Year.
So as we start another year, it seems the mobile app market continues to grow at a fierce old pace.
I must confess that reading this article in The Drum today, I was a bit suprised not only at the amount of money invloved but also the fact that
Apple’s App Store saw record profits in the first week of January after half a billion dollars were spent on apps and in-app purchases on New Year’s Day.
The firm, which takes a 30 per cent slice of all sales through its store, earned $5bn from its apps globally in 2014 – an increase of 50 per cent upon 2013.
Eddy Cue, senior vice president of internet software and services at Apple, said: “This year is off to a tremendous start after a record-breaking year for the App Store and our developer community.
“We're so proud of the creativity and innovation developers bring to the apps they create for iOS users and that the developer community has now earned over $25bn.”
In April, it emerged that the App Store generates 85 per cent more revenue than rival Google Play despite the Android platform seeing more downloads worldwide.
The App Store offers more than 1.4 million apps for iOS users in 155 countries around the world.
Apple has now shared a list of the most popular apps of the year for both the iPhone and iPad.
When it comes to free iPhone apps, Facebook dominated in 2014, grabbing the number one spot for Messenger, number four for the official Facebook app and number five with Instagram. Meanwhile, Snapchat took the number two slot, followed by YouTube at number three.
In regards to paid apps, the big winners were mobile games, starting with Heads Up! at number one and Minecraft: Pocket Edition in second. Photo editing app Afterlight grabbed the number three spot, followed by Plague Inc. (another game) and Sleep Cycle alarm clock at number five.
On the iPad’s larger screen, video-playing apps were the most popular, with YouTube and Netflix leading the free category in first and second place, respectively. Calculator for iPad grabbed the number three spot, followed by Skype and Microsoft Word at four and five.
Apple also revealed the most profitable apps for 2014 overall. The list includes Clash of Clans, Candy Crush Saga, Game of War: Fire Age, Pandora and Big Fish Casino, suggesting the freemium model may still be the best route to profits for app developers.
Apple previously called Threes! and Monument Valley the best mobile games of 2014, though neither of those paid apps made it on to this new list.
So it seems that when you want to grab new customers and users for your new app, free is still the way to go...